A Mistake Not to Make With One of the World’s Most Poisonous Frogs

Lucy Cooke recounts her close call with an endangered golden poison frog in Colombia’s Choco forest.

I press an inky thumb down on the disclaimer. The soldier has clearly explained the dangers: This is a high-risk area for malaria and yellow fever, so I must watch out for being attacked by mosquitoes, not to mention lethal, aggressive bushmaster snakes and guerrillas. Not the furry kind.

It’s January 2013 and I’m in Colombia’s wild west: a forgotten land of steamy jungles and hot politics. For decades this has been the centre of Colombian conflict, kidnap, and cocaine as warring factions of guerrillas fight over control of coca plantations and illegal goldmines.

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