Eleutherodactylus nortoni 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Amphibia Anura Eleutherodactylidae

Scientific Name: Eleutherodactylus nortoni
Species Authority: Schwartz, 1976
Common Name(s):
English Spiny Giant Frog, Norton's Robber Frog
Taxonomic Source(s): Frost, D.R. 2014. Amphibian Species of the World: an Online Reference. Version 6 (27 January 2014). New York, USA. Available at: (Accessed: 27 January 2014).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered A3c ver 3.1
Year Published: 2010
Date Assessed: 2008-12-18
Assessor(s): Blair Hedges, Sixto Inchaustegui, Robert Powell
Reviewer(s): Global Amphibian Assessment Coordinating Team (Simon Stuart, Janice Chanson, Neil Cox and Bruce Young)
Listed as Critically Endangered because of an expected population decline of greater than 80% over the next ten years, predicted from severe degradation of the species' habitat on Hispaniola.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2004 Critically Endangered (CR)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is restricted to the Massif de la Hotte and the Massif de la Selle, in Haiti, and Sierra de Bahoruco, in the Dominican Republic, Hispaniola. It has been recorded from 576-1,515 m asl.
Countries occurrence:
Dominican Republic; Haiti
Lower elevation limit (metres): 576
Upper elevation limit (metres): 1515
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: It is an uncommon species. It was last recorded in 2006 (Hedges and Díaz 2009).
Current Population Trend: Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: It is usually found in sinkhole caves in upland broadleaf forest and forest remnants, and has not been recorded from disturbed habitats. Males call from tall vegetation and rocks. Eggs are laid on the ground, and it breeds by direct development.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The primary threat is habitat destruction (due to charcoaling and agriculture), which is ongoing even in the protected areas of the Tiburon Peninsula of Haiti and the Massif de la Selle. Similarly, deforestation is taking place at the one known locality in the Dominican Republic as a result of mining, charcoaling, and agriculture.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Although the species occurs in the Parc National Macaya and the Parc National Morne La Visite in Haiti, there is no management of these areas for conservation, and the habitat continues to be destroyed. It is also known from Parque Nacional Sierra de Bahoruco in the Dominican Republic, which is better managed than protected areas in Haiti; however, degradation of the habitat within the park's limits continues. Strengthening the management of the existing protected areas network is essential, as is maintenance of the remaining habitat within the range of the species. Survey work is necessary to determine the current population status of this species.

Classifications [top]

1. Forest -> 1.6. Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes
1. Forest -> 1.9. Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Montane
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes
7. Caves and Subterranean Habitats (non-aquatic) -> 7.1. Caves and Subterranean Habitats (non-aquatic) - Caves
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes
1. Land/water protection -> 1.2. Resource & habitat protection
2. Land/water management -> 2.1. Site/area management

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Occur in at least one PA:Yes
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.1. Annual & perennial non-timber crops -> 2.1.1. Shifting agriculture
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.1. Annual & perennial non-timber crops -> 2.1.2. Small-holder farming
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

3. Energy production & mining -> 3.2. Mining & quarrying
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

5. Biological resource use -> 5.3. Logging & wood harvesting -> 5.3.5. Motivation Unknown/Unrecorded
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

3. Monitoring -> 3.1. Population trends

Bibliography [top]

Hedges, S.B. 1993. Global amphibian declines: a perspective from the Caribbean. Biodiversity and Conservation 2(3): 290-303.

Hedges, S.B. 1999. Distribution of amphibians in the West Indies. In: W.E. Duellman (ed.), Patterns of Distribution of Amphibians. A Global Perspective, pp. 211-254. The Johns Hopkins Press, Baltimore, Maryland.

Hedges, S.B. 2001. Caribherp: database of West Indian amphibians and reptiles ( Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA.

Hedges, S.B. and Díaz, L.M. 2009. Amphibian conservation in the West Indies. In: H.H. Heatwole and J.W. Wilkenson (eds), Amphibian Biology: Conservation and Decline of Amphibians, Surrey Beatty & Sons, Chipping Norton.

Henderson, R.W. and Powell, R. 1999. West Indian herpetoecology. In: B.I. Crother (ed.), Caribbean Amphibians and Reptiles, pp. 223-226. Academic Press, San Diego, California.

Henderson, R.W. and Powell, R. 2001. Responses by the West Indian herpetofauna to human-influenced resources. Caribbean Journal of Science 37: 41-54.

IUCN. 2010. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2010.2). Available at: (Accessed: 29 June 2010).

Schwartz, A. 1976. Two new species of Hispaniolan Eleutherodactylus (Leptodactylidae). Herpetologica: 163-171.

Schwartz, A. and Henderson, R.W. 1991. Amphibians and Reptiles of the West Indies: Descriptions, Distributions and Natural History. University of Florida Press, Gainesville, Florida.

Citation: Blair Hedges, Sixto Inchaustegui, Robert Powell. 2010. Eleutherodactylus nortoni. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2010: e.T56796A11526362. . Downloaded on 01 December 2015.
Disclaimer: To make use of this information, please check the <Terms of Use>.
Feedback: If you see any errors or have any questions or suggestions on what is shown on this page, please provide us with feedback so that we can correct or extend the information provided