To survey the diversity of anuran species in Bangladesh, we compared mitochondrial 16S rRNA gene sequences (approximately 1.4 kbp) from 107 Bangladesh frog specimens. The results of genetic divergence and phylogenetic analyses incorporating data from related species revealed the occurrence of at least eight cryptic species. Hoplobatrachus tigerinus from two districts diverged considerably, indicating the involvement of a cryptic species. Two Fejervarya sp. (large and medium types) and Hylarana cf. taipehensis formed lineages distinct from related species and are probably new species. Microhyla cf. ornata differed from M. ornata with respect to type locality area and involved two distinct species. In addition, we found that Hylarana sp. and Microhyla sp. did not match congeners examined to date in either morphology or 16S rRNA sequence. The occurrence of M. fissipes was tentatively suggested. Consequently, at least, 19 species were found from Bangladesh in this study. These findings revealed a rich anuran biodiversity in Bangladesh, which is unexpected considering the rather simple topographic features of the country.
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Vol. 29 • No. 3