Gastrotheca cornuta 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Amphibia Anura Hemiphractidae

Scientific Name: Gastrotheca cornuta
Species Authority: (Boulenger, 1898)
Common Name(s):
English Horned Marsupial Frog
Hyla ceratophrys Stejneger, 1911
Nototrema cornutum Boulenger, 1898
Taxonomic Source(s): Frost, D.R. 2013. Amphibian Species of the World: an Online Reference. Version 5.6 (9 January 2013). Electronic Database. American Museum of Natural History, New York, USA. Available at:
Taxonomic Notes: This genus has recently been moved from the family Hylidae (Faivovich, et al., 2005). The taxonomic relationship between G. cornuta and G. ceratophrys needs to be clarified (Luis A. Coloma pers. comm. 2007). It is possible that the specimen collected from Manta Real, Ecuador, represents a new species (Ana Almendáriz pers. comm., 2007).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered A4ace ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-01-01
Assessor(s): Coloma, L.A., Ron, S.R., Jungfer, K., Grant, T., Cisneros-Heredia, D.F., Solís, F., Ibáñez, R., Chaves, G., Savage, J., Jaramillo, C., Fuenmayor, Q., Bolaños, F., Lips, K., Lynch, J. & Almendáriz, A.
Reviewer(s): Stuart, S.N., Chanson, J.S., Cox, N.A. & Young, B.E.
Listed as Endangered because of an observed past, and projected future, decline, estimated to be at least 50% over a ten-year period, probably largely due to chytridiomycosis.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2004 Endangered (EN)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species occurs in humid lowland and premontane forests from central Costa Rica to central Panama on the Atlantic slope, and from the Pacific versant of eastern Panama, through the Pacific lowlands of Colombia, to western Ecuador (south to Manta Real [Almendáriz and Carr, 1992]; however it has not been recorded from Manta Real in a recent survey [Ana Almendáriz pers. comm., 2007]); in Costa Rica, it is known from three localities in Limón Province (300-700m asl); the overall elevational range is from sea level up to 1,000m asl.
Countries occurrence:
Colombia; Costa Rica; Ecuador; Panama
Lower elevation limit (metres): 300
Upper elevation limit (metres): 1000
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The species has declined in El Cope (now gone from this site, Lips et al., 2006; Karen Lips pers. comm., 2007) and El Valle in Panama, and the last Costa Rican record is from 1996; it has not been recorded again in this country as of August 2007 (Federico Bolaños pers. comm. 2007). As of 2007, there is little new information on the status of populations in eastern Panama, however it is presumed to still be present here (Roberto Ibáñez pers. comm., 2007). The species was formerly common in Ecuador, however populations have now dramatically declined in this country although it is not certain that the species is extirpated, and it is considered to be nationally Data Deficient (Luis Coloma pers. comm. 2007). In Colombia, it appears to have never been an especially common species (John D. Lynch pers. comm. 2007).
Current Population Trend: Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: Yes

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: A canopy species of lowland and montane humid forest characterized by high humidity throughout the year, including both primary and secondary forest, but not occurring in open areas. Animals have been recorded in African palm plantations in Ecuador (John D. Lynch pers. comm. 2007). Individuals have been found near to rivers and creeks. It breeds by direct development, the female carries fertilised eggs in a pouch on her back, the eggs hatch as fully developed frogs. It has the largest known amphibian eggs.
Systems: Terrestrial; Freshwater

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species has disappeared from Costa Rica and western Panama; these declines have been associated with the disease chytridiomycosis (Lips et al., 2006). This disease is also present in the lowlands of western Ecuador (Luis A. Coloma pers. comm. 2007), and may have contributed to the substantial declines of this species in Ecuador currently associated with extensive habitat loss. Areas of forest close to the type locality of "Cachabé" (= Cachabí), Provincia Esmeralda, Ecuador have now been deforested and no Gastrotheca cornuta are present here (Luis A. Coloma pers. comm. 2007). It is possible that the species has declined in Colombia, with few records and ongoing serious habitat fragmentation in Cauca and Nariño (John D. Lynch pers. comm. 2007; Fernando Castro pers. comm. 2007). Major threats other than disease are deforestation for agricultural development, illegal crops, logging, and human settlement, and pollution resulting from the spraying of illegal crops.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: In Ecuador, its geographic range overlaps with the Reserva Ecológica Cotacachi-Cayapas. It occurs, or occurred, in several protected areas in Colombia, Panama and Costa Rica. A small ex-situ population of this species is breeding at the El Valle Amphibian Conservation Center in Panama (Edgardo Griffith pers. comm. September, 2007).

Citation: Coloma, L.A., Ron, S.R., Jungfer, K., Grant, T., Cisneros-Heredia, D.F., Solís, F., Ibáñez, R., Chaves, G., Savage, J., Jaramillo, C., Fuenmayor, Q., Bolaños, F., Lips, K., Lynch, J. & Almendáriz, A. 2008. Gastrotheca cornuta. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T55329A11294031. . Downloaded on 26 November 2015.
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