During May 1997, specimens of 7 species of anurans, that included 5 Phrynohyas venulosa Laurenti, 5 Rana forreri Boulenger, 7 Rana vaillanti Brucchi, 6 Eleutherodactylus fitzingeri Schimdt, 4 Smilisca baudinii Duméril and Bibron, 1 Leptodactylus melanonotus, and 3 Bufo marinus Linneaus, from the Guanacaste Conservation Area, Costa Rica were examined for blood parasites. Their hematozoan fauna included intraerythrocytic and intraleukocytic icosahedral viruses, a rickettsia (Aegyptianella sp.), 2 species of Hepatozoon, Lankesterella minima, 2 unknown species of apicomplexans, 9 morphologically distinct types of trypanosomes, and 2 species of microfilariae. Rana vaillanti, the most aquatic species of frog, harbored the most species of parasites. Recent evidence indicates that morphological changes in the highly pleomorphic trypanosomes of anurans from different geographical regions have not kept pace with biochemical (isozyme) and molecular (DNA sequence) changes. Describing new species based solely on bloodstream trypomastigotes is discouraged. Additional criteria described herein should be applied when naming new species of anuran trypanosomes.
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