Scientists recently made a fascinating discovery of the tiniest frogs in the world. These two species of frogs were found in Papua, New Guinea and both are smaller than a penny. Their size runs about 0.4 inches (8-9 millimeters) in length. Not only are they the smallest frogs ever found, but they are also the smallest of a group of animals called tetrapods (four-legged animals with backbones). Their scientific names are Paedophryne dekot and Paedophryne verrucosa. The name P. dekot comes from the word for "very small" in the local language Daga and P. verrucosa was named from the Latin word for "full of warts," due to its distinctively lumpy skin. At this time it is not known who their closet frog relatives are.

These two species, along with 2 other slightly larger varieties live in the small mountain ranges of southeastern Papua, New Guinea and its offshore islands. Because of their small size they can have only two eggs, which limits their ability to reproduce. Other species of frogs usually have lots of eggs per litter, so this small number is considered to be very rare. They also seem to have hit the lower limit of body size for frogs and toads, so it's unlikely that researchers will find anything much smaller.

They have found a niche on the forest floor, where their tiny body size allows them to hide among leaf litter and moss. This is because due to their tiny size, their fingers and toes are too small to allow for much climbing. It is also thought that they might eat tiny arthropods, such as mites. Since they also lose moisture very quickly, this restricts them to live in very wet tropical forests. Much more will soon be revealed about their way of life as scientists continue to study them. It is a very exciting discovery in the world of amphibians.

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