Rhinoderma rufum 

Scope: Global
Language: English

Translate page into:

Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Amphibia Anura Cycloramphidae

Scientific Name: Rhinoderma rufum (Philippi, 1902)
Common Name(s):
English Northern Darwin's Frog
Spanish Ranita de Darwin del Norte, Sapito Vaquero
Taxonomic Source(s): Frost, D.R. 2015. Amphibian Species of the World: an Online Reference. Version 6.0. New York, USA. Available at:

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered (Possibly Extinct) D ver 3.1
Year Published: 2015
Date Assessed: 2015-07-10
Assessor(s): IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group
Reviewer(s): Luedtke, J.
Contributor(s): Veloso, A., Charrier, A., Cuevas, C., Correa, C., Soto, C., Díaz-Paéz, H., Nunez, H., Mendez, M., Formas, R. & Díaz, S.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Hobin, L. & Superina, M.
Listed as Critically Endangered, Possibly Extinct, because the species has not been recorded since 1981 in spite of intense attempts to find it in its historical range. The habitat where it formerly occurred has been destroyed, and chytridiomycosis has been identified in historical collections and may well have played a significant role in its disappearance. Nevertheless, the reasons for the sudden decline of this species remain unclear.
Date last seen: 1981
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species once occurred in Chile from Zapallar (Valparaíso region) to Ramadillas (Bíobío region), at elevations of 0-500 m asl (Soto-Azat et al. 2013). Its area of occurrence was 46,491 km2.
Countries occurrence:
Possibly extinct:
Chile (Biobío, Maule, O'Higgins, Valparaíso)
Additional data:
Upper elevation limit (metres):500
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:It formerly occurred in small, isolated subpopulations, and was fairly regularly seen until around 1978. Hamburg Museum has a jar with 181 individuals collected in only 2 days in Chiguayante, Bíobío region (Soto-Azat et al. 2013). However, since 1981 there have been no confirmed reports despite several attempts to locate the species, giving rise to fears that it might be extinct; the last record was from Río Ramadillas.
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Number of mature individuals:0
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:It has been recorded in leaf-litter in temperate mixed forests, and also in small streams surrounded by forests. Females lay their eggs in the leaf-litter. When the larvae inside the eggs begin to move, adult males ingest the eggs and incubate them in their vocal sacs, where the larvae develop until they are regurgitated into streams where metamorphosis takes place.
Systems:Terrestrial; Freshwater
Movement patterns:Not a Migrant

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: There are no records of this species being utilized.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The destruction of the native vegetation through the planting of pine plantations and for the building of second homes probably impacts this species. However this is unlikely to explain its disappearance completely, the causes of which are not fully understood. Declines that have taken place within suitable habitat might be the result of threats such as climate change or disease. Chytridiomycosis is probably implicated in the enigmatic disappearance of this species (Soto-Azat et al. 2013).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions
It is not known from any protected area, as there are none within its historical range. 

Research Needed
The species might well be extinct, but further survey work is urgently required to determine whether or not this is the case.

Citation: IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group. 2015. Rhinoderma rufum. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T19514A79809567. . Downloaded on 19 September 2018.
Disclaimer: To make use of this information, please check the <Terms of Use>.
Feedback: If you see any errors or have any questions or suggestions on what is shown on this page, please provide us with feedback so that we can correct or extend the information provided