Afrixalus enseticola


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Afrixalus enseticola
Species Authority: Largen, 1974
Common Name(s):
English Ethiopian Banana Frog

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable 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., Gebresenbet, F.G., Largen, M.J. & Loader, S.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Angulo, A.
Listed as Vulnerable because its extent of occurrence (EOO) is estimated at 3,281 km2, it is considered to occur in six threat-defined locations, and there is continuing decline in the extent and quality of its forest habitat in the Ethiopian Highlands due to a variety of threats.
2004 Vulnerable

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is endemic to high-altitude areas of southern Ethiopia occurring on both sides of the Rift Valley at altitudes between 1,700 and 2,750 m asl. Recent surveys have confirmed its presence in previously known localities Bore and Bonga; however, intervening areas in the southwest and east still need to be surveyed (A. Mengistu and S. Loader pers. comms. June 2012). It is estimated to occur in six threat-defined locations (A. Mengistu and S. Loader pers. comm. June 2012). Taking its range as a proxy, its extent of occurrence (EOO) is estimated to be 3,281 km2; however, it should be noted that there is a level of uncertainty associated with the edges of its range.
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: It was locally common within its relatively restricted range at the time when the specimens were collected (1971-1975) (Largen 2001). Recent collections in 2009 have confirmed that this species is still locally abundant (A. Mengistu and S. Loader pers.comms. June 2012). Its population is not considered to be severely fragmented.
Population Trend: Stable

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: It is found in montane forest at high altitudes, and rarely in montane grassland after forest clearance, typically breeding amongst herbaceous vegetation surrounding pools in forest clearings. It can survive in plantations and rural gardens suggesting tolerance to moderate disturbance (A. Mengistu and S. Loader pers. comms. June 2012). For breeding it requires emergent vegetation in marshy pools, at least some of which are likely to become dry for part of the year.
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 major threat is ongoing habitat loss due to selective logging, human settlement, and small-scale and large-scale agricultural encroachment (A. Mengistu and S. Loader pers. comms. June 2012). Chytrid fungus occurs in high prevalence in amphibians in highland Ethiopia and has been detected on this species, although its impact is not known (Gower et al. 2012).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: It is known to occur in the Bale Mountains National Park, although area management is very limited and enforcement is required (A. Mengistu and S. Loader pers. comm. June 2012). Additional actions needed include the protection of remaining montane forest habitats from subsistence exploitation. More information is needed on this species' distribution, population status, natural history and the potential effects of chytrid fungus on its population.

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: (Accessed: 12 June 2013).

Largen, M.J. 1974. The status of the genus Afrixalus (Amphibia, Anura, Hyperoliidae) in Ethiopia, including descriptions of two new species. Monitore Zoologico Italiano N.S. Supplemento 5: 111-127.

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.

Citation: IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group, 2013. Afrixalus enseticola. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015.2. <>. Downloaded on 01 September 2015.
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