Hyloxalus vertebralis


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Hyloxalus vertebralis
Species Authority: (Boulenger, 1899)
Common Name(s):
English Boulenger's Rocket Frog
Colostethus vertebralis (Boulenger, 1899)

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered A2ace ver 3.1
Year Published: 2004
Date Assessed: 2004-04-30
Assessor(s): Luis A. Coloma, Santiago Ron, Manuel Morales, Ana Almendáriz
Reviewer(s): Global Amphibian Assessment Coordinating Team (Simon Stuart, Janice Chanson, Neil Cox and Bruce Young)
Listed as Critically Endangered because of a drastic population decline, estimated to be more than 80% over the last three generations, inferred from the apparent disappearance of most of the population, possibly due to chytridiomycosis.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species occurs in the inter-Andean valleys and on the western slopes of the Andes in southern Ecuador, at elevations of 1,770-3,500m asl.
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The most recent record of this species is from 1997 (QCAZ database). It was abundant in the Bosque Protector Mazán in 1986, but one year of searching in 1995 yielded only a single specimen. It was also abundant in Laguna Busa in 1987. Recent expeditions to the range have turned up no specimens, and no surviving populations are known.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: It occurs in cloud forest, in ponds in open areas and in streams. Eggs are placed on the ground, and the males carry the tadpoles to streams where they develop further.
Systems: Terrestrial; Freshwater

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The primary threat to this species is habitat destruction and degradation, due to agriculture and clear cutting, but this does not account for the observed decline, and chytridiomycosis is implicated as the likely cause of its apparent disappearance.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The range of this species overlaps Parque Nacional Cajas and slightly overlaps Parque Nacional Sangay. Survey work is urgently needed to determine whether or not this species survives in its natural range.

Citation: Luis A. Coloma, Santiago Ron, Manuel Morales, Ana Almendáriz 2004. Hyloxalus vertebralis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <>. Downloaded on 01 April 2015.
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