Cophyla tetra 

Scope: Global

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Amphibia Anura Microhylidae

Scientific Name: Cophyla tetra
Species Authority: (Andreone, Fenolio & Walvoord, 2003)
Common Name(s):
English Four-spotted Tree Cophyline Frog
Platypelis tetra Andreone, Fenolio & Walvoord, 2003
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:

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered B1ab(iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2016-02-23
Assessor(s): IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group
Reviewer(s): Stuart, S.N.
Contributor(s): Andreone, F.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Best, S.
Listed as Endangered because its extent of occurrence (EOO) is 4,759 km2, it is severely fragmented, occurring to two threat-defined locations, and there is ongoing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat in northeastern Madagascar.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species occurs in northeastern Madagascar, where it has been recorded from Lohanandroranga (near Bealanana) south of Tsaratanana (Rosa et al. 2014) to Andapa Fivondronana and the Anjanaharibe-Sud Massif. It is also known from near the village of Analalava in the northeast of the Masoala Peninsula (Wolf 2014). Its elevational range is 13-1,250 m asl and its extent of occurrence (EOO) is 4,759 km2.
Countries occurrence:
Additional data:
Number of Locations:2
Lower elevation limit (metres):13
Upper elevation limit (metres):1250
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:It appears to be moderately common in suitable habitat, but is severely fragmented and decreasing due to ongoing habitat loss.
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:Yes

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:It is a species of transitional forest and medium altitudes, with tall trees and abundant lichens, mosses and ferns where it appears to be closely associated with screw pines (Pandanus spp.). It has been found in degraded forest, providing that screw pines are still present. On the Masoala Peninsula, it is known from a tiny fragment of littoral forest, which used to stretch all along the eastern coast of Madagascar but has all but vanished and is now restricted to fragments such as this one (Wolf 2014).

It presumably breeds by larval development in the leaf axils of screw pines.
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Yes
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 major threat is habitat loss due to subsistence agriculture, timber extraction, charcoal manufacture, livestock grazing, and expanding human settlements. It is probably particularly sensitive to the collection of screw pines, which are used for making the roofs of huts. Several decades of logging valuable tree species from the genera Dalbergia and Uapaca, and ongoing agricultural exploitation have converted and disturbed the littoral forest habitat on Masoala Pensinsula (Wolf 2014).

Species in this genus have tested positive for Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), however currently there have been no negative effects observed within amphibian populations in Madagascar suggesting the Bd strain has a low virulence level (Bletz et al. 2015).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation in Place
It occurs in Anjanaharibe-Sud Special Reserve. The littoral forest fragment is managed by the Malagasy NGO Projet d’Analalava (Wolf 2014).

Conservation Needed
Improved protection and management of forest habitats is required.

Research Needed
Population and trends, life history and ecology.  Further research is essential to fully understand the distribution, origin, type and virulence of Bd lineages found in Madagascar (Bletz et al. 2015).

Citation: IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group. 2016. Cophyla tetra. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T57962A84179970. . Downloaded on 23 October 2016.
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