Leptopelis susanae


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Leptopelis susanae
Species Authority: Largen, 1977
Common Name(s):
English Susana's Forest Treefrog, Susan's Tree Frog
Taxonomic Notes: Molecular data confirm that the subpopulation in Saja (Kaffa) forest pertains to this nominal form (A. Mengistu and S. Loader pers. comm. June 2012).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered B1ab(iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2012-06-02
Assessor(s): IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group,
Reviewer(s): Stuart, S.
Contributor(s): Mengistu, A.A., Schiøtz, A., Gebresenbet, F.G., Largen, M.J. & Loader, S.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Angulo, A.
Listed as Endangered because its extent of occurrence (EOO) is estimated at 829 km2, its population is considered to be severely fragmented, and there is continuing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat in the Gughe Mountains and Saja forest in southwest Ethiopia.
2004 Endangered

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species occurs in the Gughe Mountains, at 2,600-3,000 m asl and Saja forest at 1,960 m asl in the southwest of Ethiopia (Largen 2001; A. Mengistu and S. Loader pers. comm. June 2012). It was previously reported from the Bale Mountains (Weinsheimer et al. 2010), but this record appears to be a misidentification (A. Mengistu and S. Loader pers. comm. June 2012). It is possible that it may occur more widely, in the intervening forest patches between Saja forest and Gughe Mountains (A. Mengistu and S. Loader pers. comm. June 2012). Its range, taken as a proxy for its extent of occurrence (EOO), is estimated to be 829 km2, which is also considered a very generous estimate of its area of occupancy (AOO), given that this species needs forest to survive.

Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: It was reasonably numerous in at least two localities in 1975 (Largen 2001); field work in 2008 in Gughe recorded two specimens and a single specimen in 2009 in Saja forest, suggesting that this is not a common species based on these limited surveys (A. Mengistu and S. Loader pers. comm. June 2012). Its population is considered to be severely fragmented.
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: It is confined to montane forest remnants, and has not been found in degraded habitats (Largen 2001; A. Mengistu and S. Loader pers. comm. June 2012). Calling males have been found along the banks of streams, in which larval development presumably occurs. The eggs are presumably laid in nests on land, near the water.
Systems: Terrestrial; Freshwater

Use and Trade [top]

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

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The main threats are forest clearance, human settlement, and small and large-scale agricultural encroachment. Both the Gughe Mountains and Saja forest are heavily populated and intensively cultivated, and only small patches of montane forest remain (Largen 2001; A. Mengistu and S. Loader pers. comm. June 2012).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: It is not currently known to be present in any protected areas, and the protection of forest remnants in the Gughe Mountains and Saja forest are urgently needed. Given the prevalence of chytrid across the Ethiopian highland habitat (including southwest forests) it is important to determine whether it is present in Gughe Mountains (Gower et al. 2012). More information is needed on this species' distribution, especially in intervening areas between known sites, population status and natural history.

Bibliography [top]

Gower, D.J., Doherty-Bone, T.M., Aberra, R.K., Mengistu, A.A., Schwaller, S., Menegon, M., de Sá, R., Saber, S.A., Cunningham, A.A. and Loader, S.P. 2012. High prevalence of the amphibian chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis) across multiple taxa and localities in the highlands of Ethiopia. Herpetological Journal 22: 225-233.

IUCN. 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2013.1). Available at: http://www.iucnredlist.org. (Accessed: 12 June 2013).

Largen, M.J. 1977. The status of the genus Leptopelis (Amphibia, Anura, Hyperoliidae) in Ethiopia, including the descriptions of two new species. Monitore Zoologico Italiano N.S. Supplemento 9: 85-136.

Largen, M.J. 2001. Catalogue of the amphibians of Ethiopia, including a key for their identification. Tropical Zoology 14: 307-402.

Schiøtz, A. 1999. Treefrogs of Africa. Edition Chimaira, Frankfurt am Main.

Weinsheimer, F., Mengistu, A.A., and Rödder, D. 2010. Potential distribution of threatened Leptopelis spp. (Anura, Arthroleptidae) in Ethiopia derived from climate and land cover-data. Endangered Species Research 9: 117-124.

Citation: IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group, 2013. Leptopelis susanae. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 30 August 2015.
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