Craugastor bransfordii 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Amphibia Anura Craugastoridae

Scientific Name: Craugastor bransfordii
Species Authority: (Cope, 1886)
Common Name(s):
English Bransford's Robber Frog
Eleutherodactylus bransfordii (Cope, 1886)
Eleutherodactylus costaricensis (Taylor, 1952)
Eleutherodactylus rearki (Taylor, 1952)
Hylodes bransfordii (Cope, 1886)
Lithodytes bransfordii Cope, 1886
Microbatrachylus bransfordii (Cope, 1886)
Microbatrachylus costaricensis Taylor, 1952
Microbatrachylus rearki Taylor, 1952
Taxonomic Source(s): Frost, D.R. 2015. Amphibian Species of the World: an Online Reference. Version 6.0. New York, USA. Available at:
Taxonomic Notes: This species was previously within the genus Eleutherodactylus (Crawford and Smith 2005). It ranges from Nicaragua to Costa Rica. However, the population endemic to Panama is now recognized to be distinct from C. bransfordii, but has yet to receive a formal name. Information about this taxon is included in the C. bransfordii account until a published name becomes available. Additionally, specimens from northern Nicaragua previously included as C. bransfordii have now been identified as C. lauraster.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2015
Date Assessed: 2014-06-20
Assessor(s): IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group
Reviewer(s): Hobin, L.
Contributor(s): Wetterau, A., Gratwicke, B., Jaramillo, C., Bolaños, F., Solís, F., Chaves, G., Kohler, G., Sunyer, J., Savage, J., Fuenmayor, Q. & Ibáñez, R.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Wetterau, A.
Listed as Least Concern in view of its wide distribution, tolerance of a degree of habitat modification and presumed large population.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2010 Least Concern (LC)
2004 Least Concern (LC)
2004 Least Concern (LC)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species can be found in Eastern Nicaragua to central Costa Rica. In Costa Rica it is known from 60-880 m asl. In Nicaragua it has been collected as high as 1,535 m (Sunyer and Köhler 2010). The Panamanian taxon formerly included within C. bransfordii is found on the Atlantic versant of central Panama, from the lowlands to elevations approaching 2,000 m asl. All populations currently referred to as C. bransfordii are included on the map, only when the Panamanian population has been formally named will it be removed.
Countries occurrence:
Costa Rica; Nicaragua; Panama
Lower elevation limit (metres): 60
Upper elevation limit (metres): 2000
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Several related species have been included in C. bransfordii in the past, making it difficult to discern distribution and abundance from the literature. C. bransfordii is known to experience marked population fluctuations from year to year. The population at La Selva, Costa Rica, appeared to have experienced a 4-5% annual decline over 35 years (Whitfield et al. 2007). However, it has since been very common at that site (Folt and Reider 2013) and was the most frequently detected frog at La Selva and its surrounding secondary forests in 2012 (Hilje and Mitchell Aide). The species was present in Monteverde at all elevations during surveys between 1990 and 1994 (Pounds et al. 1997), is still present in Braulio Carrillo National Park (Puschendorf et al. 2006), and is abundant in Guyacan (Kubicki 2008).  It is abundant but declining at El Quebracho, Nicaragua (Barquero et al. 2010) and it is abundant in southeastern Nicaragua (Sunyer et al. 2009). Severe declines have been reported in El Copé (Crawford et al. 2010).
Current Population Trend: Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species is associated with lowland moist and wet forests, premontane wet forest, and marginally in premontane rainforest. It may also be found in moderately disturbed areas. The Panamanian taxon is also present in these habitat types, although it is unclear as to whether or not it is tolerant of habitat disturbance. Both taxa are terrestrial, direct development species occurring in the leaf-litter layer.
Systems: Terrestrial

Use and Trade [top]

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

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): General habitat loss by the destruction of natural forests (from urban expansion, agriculture and logging) is a threat to these taxa. At La Selva, declines seem to be driven by climate-driven reductions in quantity of standing leaf litter (Whitfield et al. 2007). Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), the causative agent of chytridiomycosis, is present in lowland populations with seasonal variation (Whitfield et al. 2012), and lowland populations in Costa Rica exhibited low (8/70) Bd prevalence (Kerby et al. 2010).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions
Portions of the range of C. bransfordii are protected in national parks or protected areas of Costa Rica. The Nicaraguan taxon is present within the protected areas of Reserva Biosfera Bosawás, Reserva Biosfera del Sureste de Nicaragua, Parque Nacional (Köhler 2001). The Panamanian taxon is present within the protected areas of Area de manejo especial Nusagandi, Parque Nacional Chagres, Parque Nacional Soberania and Parque Nacional Altos de Campana. 

Research Needed

Taxonomic studies are required for this species (G. Chaves pers. comm. 2015).

Citation: IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group. 2015. Craugastor bransfordii. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T56472A3040145. . Downloaded on 26 November 2015.
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