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Taudactylus eungellensis 

Scope: Global
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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Amphibia Anura Myobatrachidae

Scientific Name: Taudactylus eungellensis
Species Authority: Liem & Hosmer, 1973
Common Name(s):
English Eungella Day Frog, Eungella Torrent Frog
Taxonomic Source(s): Frost, D.R. 2014. Amphibian Species of the World: an Online Reference. Version 6 (27 January 2014). New York, USA. Available at: http://research.amnh.org/herpetology/amphibia/index.html. (Accessed: 27 January 2014).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered B2ab(v) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2004
Date Assessed: 2004-04-30
Annotations:
Needs updating
Assessor(s): Jean-Marc Hero, Richard Retallick, Keith McDonald, Ross Alford, Michael Cunningham, John Clarke
Reviewer(s): Global Amphibian Assessment Coordinating Team (Simon Stuart, Janice Chanson and Neil Cox)
Justification:
Listed as Critically Endangered because its Area of Occupancy is less than 10km2, its distribution is severely fragmented, and a continuing decline is predicted in the number of mature individuals.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species, an Australian endemic, is restricted to the ranges west of Mackay, mid-eastern Queensland, from Clarke Range in the north to Finch Hatton Gorge and Credition in the south at altitudes between 200 and 1,000m asl (Ingram 1980; Covacevich and McDonald 1993).
Countries occurrence:
Native:
Australia
Additional data:
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:This species was considered common across its range until January 1985 when the first signs of decline (Winter and McDonald 1986) were observed at lower altitudes (i.e., about 400m asl). At higher altitudes the frogs were common until March 1985, but were absent in June of that year (McDonald 1990). A small population was recorded in the south of its distribution in June 1986, but disappeared after that date (McDonald 1990). Tadpoles were present in the southern areas of the distribution until May 1987 (McDonald 1990). After a period of apparent absence, an individual was rediscovered in 1992 (Couper 1992) and the species has subsequently been recorded at nine scattered locations within Eungella National Park (McNellie and Hero 1994; Retallick, Hero and Alford 1997; Hero et al. 1998; Retallick 1998). Populations of the species were monitored throughout 1994-1998 along sections of streams at altitudes between 180 and 980m asl (Retallick, Hero and Alford 1997; Retallick 1998). Population sizes differed noticeably between sites but appeared to be consistent over time. Interestingly, a significant proportion of each population was recaptured with each visit, which suggests that the population turnover is low, and that the population size is also low. The monitored populations are a large population at Rawson Creek, a medium-sized population at Dooloomai Falls, and a small population at Tree Fern Creek. Frogs at other sites were caught too irregularly to provide useful information. Although the numbers of frogs found at these sites are encouraging and appear to be slowly increasing (Retallick, Hero and Alford 1997), at Dooloomai Falls the current number of frogs remain substantially lower than were recorded before the precipitous population declines in 1985/1986 (McDonald, in Retallick, Hero and Alford 1997). Regular monitoring since 1999 has found low numbers at nine streams and high numbers at one stream. Numbers might have declined at several sites since 1997 but there has been drought for much of this time, which might have reduced numbers and/or activity.
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:It occurs along small and large streams in rainforest as well as wet sclerophyll forest (Liem and Hosmer 1973). The immediate streamside habitat is dense rainforest with ferns, vines, palms and epiphytes in the understorey (Retallick, Hero and Alford 1997). The species inhabits exposed steep, rocky sections of streams especially within splash zones of waterfalls and cascades (McNellie and Hero 1994; Retallick, Hero and Alford 1997) and may be found under rocks and crevices or on emergent rocks in the stream (Liem and Hosmer 1973; Retallick, Hero and Alford 1997). Tadpoles are found in first to third order streams in large and relatively still mid-stream pools, or partially connected streamside pools (Retallick and Hero 1998). Tadpoles have been observed in the benthic layer among rocks, litter, and detritus (Retallick and Hero 1998). It is a stream-dwelling/stream-breeding species. Males call during the day throughout most of the year with a peak in activity and calling during autumn and the warmer months of the year (Retallick, Hero and Alford 1997). About 30-50 pigmented eggs are laid though sites of oviposition are unknown (Liem and Hosmer 1973; Retallick and Hero 1998). Retallick and Hero (1998) described the tadpole of the species. Peak-breeding season is between January and May, but tadpoles of all sizes and developmental stages may be found throughout the year (Retallick and Hero 1998). Newly hatched tadpoles have been recorded in April, May and December (Retallick, Hero and Alford 1997). Metamorphosis occurs mainly between November and January (Retallick and Hero 1998).
Systems:Terrestrial; Freshwater

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The cause(s) of the decline remains unknown. McDonald (1990) found no obvious evidence that seasonal rarity, over-collecting, drought, floods, habitat destruction, heavy parasite loads or stress due to handling and data collection were responsible for the population declines. Sick and dying frogs have occasionally been encountered (Hero et al. 1998, 2002) and it might be that the fungal disease, chytridiomycosis, has had an impact on the population (Berger et al. 1998). Studies of tissue samples collected between 1994 and 1998 show that the chytrid fungus had infected some individuals of this species. Forest grazing and trampling of streamside vegetation by livestock have been identified as possible threats to the species, but there is no evidence to support this (Dadds 1999). Cane toads Rhinella marina might be able to penetrate natural habitats along roadways and utilize ponds for breeding, but there is no evidence of this occurring (Dadds 1999) or that this would have a negative impact on the species (R.W.R. Retallick pers. comm.).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Much of the species' remaining habitat is protected within National Parks and State Forests. It is listed as endangered in Australian legislation. Research and monitoring of populations is in place.

Citation: Jean-Marc Hero, Richard Retallick, Keith McDonald, Ross Alford, Michael Cunningham, John Clarke. 2004. Taudactylus eungellensis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2004: e.T21531A9298968. . Downloaded on 05 December 2016.
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