Phrynobatrachus cricogaster 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Amphibia Anura Phrynobatrachidae

Scientific Name: Phrynobatrachus cricogaster Perret, 1957
Common Name(s):
English Nkongsamba River Frog
Taxonomic Source(s): Frost, D.R. 2016. Amphibian Species of the World: an Online Reference. Version 6.0 (31 March 2016). New York, USA. Available at:

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2017
Date Assessed: 2016-07-06
Assessor(s): IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group
Reviewer(s): Stuart, S.N.
Contributor(s): Amiet, J.-L., Hirschfeld, M., Rödel , M.-O., Gartshore, M. & Gonwouo, N.L.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Luedtke, J., Hobin, L.
Listed as Near Threatened because its extent of occurrence (EOO) is 23,930 km2, its population is considered to be severely fragmented, and there is a continuing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat in the mountains of eastern Nigeria and western Cameroon, making it close to qualifying for Vulnerable under criterion B.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is restricted to the mountains of eastern Nigeria and western Cameroon at 850–1,850 m Asl. There are records from the Obudu Plateau and the higher parts of the Oban Hills in Nigeria, and from the Bakossi Hills, Rumpi Hills, Mount Kupe, Mount Manengouba, Mount Nlonako, and the Bamileke plateau (Petit Diboum, Mount Bana, Fotabong and Foto) in Cameroon. Its EOO is 23,930 km2.
Countries occurrence:
Cameroon; Nigeria
Additional data:
Lower elevation limit (metres):850
Upper elevation limit (metres):1850
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:In 2006 the species was found to be abundant at 1,400 m Asl on Mount Manengouba (N. Gonwouo pers. comm. June 2012), but rare at 1,000 m Asl on Mount Nlonako. However, as with other species found on Mount Manengouba, it is likely that the overall abundance may have decreased (M. Hirschfeld pers. comm. June 2012). Due to ongoing human activity within its range, the species' habitat is increasingly fragmented, with over 50% of its population found in isolated patches. Furthermore, as it is a high-altitude species, it is considered unlikely to be able to disperse between fragments, let alone between high-altitude habitat.
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:Yes

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This species lives in submontane and montane primary and secondary forest, degraded forest, and dense brush where it breeds in still pools along mountain streams. It does not appear to survive in completely open habitats.
Systems:Terrestrial; Freshwater
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): Although it is somewhat adaptable, it is generally affected by agricultural expansion, logging, and human settlements, especially when these lead to serious opening up of the habitat.

On Mount Manengouba, the major threat is increasing habitat loss as a result of agricultural encroachment, including plantations of tree crops; expanding human settlements; and removal of wood by local people for firewood and building materials. On Mount Manengouba, trampling by livestock in the forest is a threat to this species and degrades its habitat; the use of herbicides and pesticides here is suspected to have long-term effects on the stream habitat, affecting the larval stage, and this threat is expected to increase as human activity in the area increases (N. Gonwouo pers. comm. June 2012). Deforestation on Mount Manengouba also occurs due to the unsustainable collection of bark from Prunus africanus—a high-elevation tree endemic to the Cameroon highlands—by the method of tree ringing. The tree's bark is used in small amounts for medicinal purposes by local people. However, it is also sold to pharmaceutical companies in large amounts, in which case all the bark is removed from the individual trees, resulting in their death. The consequence of the latter practice changes the microclimate required for the species' survival (N. Gonwouo pers. comm. May 2012).

A retrospective study analysing amphibian population declines (between 2004–2012) confirms the emergence of Bd in 2008 on Mount Oku and in 2011 on Mount Manengouba, suggesting that chytridiomycosis has driven community level declines of anuran biodiversity in this hotspot area (Hirschfeld et al. 2016). This species was not tested for Bd during the Hirschfeld et al. (2016), but other species in the genus, but other species in the genus had mixed results.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions
This species occurs in the Cross River National Park in Nigeria. 

Conservation Needed
While Mount Manengouba has been proposed as a protected area, there is a need for improved habitat protection of all montane forest habitats in Cameroon. 

Research Needed
More information is needed on this species' distribution, population status, natural history and threats, and monitoring efforts are also needed to determine the population trend of this species.

Citation: IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group. 2017. Phrynobatrachus cricogaster. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T58103A16928501. . Downloaded on 20 September 2018.
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