Afrixalus delicatus 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Amphibia Anura Hyperoliidae

Scientific Name: Afrixalus delicatus
Species Authority: Pickersgill, 1984
Common Name(s):
English Pickersgill's Banana Frog
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:
Taxonomic Notes:

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2013-07-17
Assessor(s): IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group
Reviewer(s): Stuart, S.N.
Contributor(s): Schiøtz, A., Minter, L. & Pickersgill, M.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Morris, E.J.
Listed as Least Concern in view of its wide distribution, tolerance of a broad range of habitats and its presumed large population.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2004 Least Concern (LC)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species ranges from Avoca and Mount Edgecombe in KwaZulu-Natal (eastern South Africa) northward through the coastal belt of Mozambique, the low altitude parts of Malawi to Tanzania (inland as far as Singida and Ushora), southeastern Kenya, and southern Somalia as far north as Marere. It also occurs on Zanzibar. Though its presence is uncertain in Swaziland, its species distribution on the map does include Swaziland. It is a low altitude species, and is found below 300 m asl in South Africa, and below 500 m asl in most of its range.
Countries occurrence:
Kenya; Malawi; Mozambique; Somalia; South Africa; Tanzania, United Republic of
Upper elevation limit (metres):500
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:It is common in the north of its range, where it occurs in very large breeding aggregations, but it has declined in extreme south of range where it is not common (though it is possibly under-recorded).
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:It is a species of coastal bush land; savannah, shrubland, grassland, forest, thicket and anthropogenically disturbed habitats. It breeds in emergent vegetation usually at the edges of relatively permanent water (including marshes, vleis and pools) favouring plants with long leaves that can be folded to make leaf nests over 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): In the south of its range it is threatened by sugar cane farming, urbanization, and the spread of eucalyptus (drying up breeding sites). Chemical spraying to control mosquitoes might impact some populations. However, overall it is not threatened.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: It occurs in many protected areas.

Classifications [top]

1. Forest -> 1.5. Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Dry
suitability: Suitable  
2. Savanna -> 2.1. Savanna - Dry
suitability: Marginal  
2. Savanna -> 2.2. Savanna - Moist
suitability: Suitable  
3. Shrubland -> 3.6. Shrubland - Subtropical/Tropical Moist
suitability: Suitable  
4. Grassland -> 4.4. Grassland - Temperate
suitability: Suitable  
4. Grassland -> 4.6. Grassland - Subtropical/Tropical Seasonally Wet/Flooded
suitability: Suitable  
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.4. Wetlands (inland) - Bogs, Marshes, Swamps, Fens, Peatlands
suitability: Suitable  
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.7. Wetlands (inland) - Permanent Freshwater Marshes/Pools (under 8ha)
suitability: Suitable  
14. Artificial/Terrestrial -> 14.1. Artificial/Terrestrial - Arable Land
suitability: Marginal  
14. Artificial/Terrestrial -> 14.2. Artificial/Terrestrial - Pastureland
suitability: Marginal  
14. Artificial/Terrestrial -> 14.6. Artificial/Terrestrial - Subtropical/Tropical Heavily Degraded Former Forest
suitability: Suitable  
15. Artificial/Aquatic & Marine -> 15.2. Artificial/Aquatic - Ponds (below 8ha)
suitability: Suitable  

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Conservation sites identified:Unknown
  Occur in at least one PA:Yes
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
1. Residential & commercial development -> 1.1. Housing & urban areas
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

1. Residential & commercial development -> 1.2. Commercial & industrial areas
♦ 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 -> 2.1.3. Agro-industry farming
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

8. Invasive & other problematic species & genes -> 8.1. Invasive non-native/alien species -> 8.1.2. Named species
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

9. Pollution -> 9.3. Agricultural & forestry effluents -> 9.3.3. Herbicides and pesticides
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

Bibliography [top]

Backwell, P.R.Y. 1988. Functional partitioning in the two-part call of the leaf-folding frog, Afrixalus brachycnemis. Herpetologica: 1-7.

Backwell, P.R.Y. and Passmore, N.I. 1990. Aggressive interactions and internal spacing in choruses of the leaf-folding frog, Afrixalus delicatus. S. Afr. J. Zool.: 133-137.

Backwell, P.R.Y. and Passmore, N.I. 1990. Polyandry in the leaf-folding frog, Afrixalus delicatus. Herpetologica: 7-10.

Backwell, P.R.Y. and Passmore, N.I. 1991. Advertisement calls and female phonotaxis in Natal dwarf Afrixalus (Anura: Hyperoliidae). Journal of African Zoology: 275-280.

Channing, A. 2001. Amphibians of Central and Southern Africa. Cornell University Press, Ithaca and London.

IUCN. 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2013.2). Available at: (Accessed: 13 November 2013).

Minter, L.R., Burger, M., Harrison, J.A., Braack, H.H., Bishop, P.J. and Knoepfer, D. 2004. Atlas and Red Data Book of the Frogs of South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland. SI/MAB Series No. 9, Washington, D.C.

Passmore, N.I. and Carruthers, V.C. 1995. South African Frogs, 2nd Edition. Southern Book Publishers and Witwatersrand University Press, Johannesburg.

Pickersgill, M. 1984. Three new Afrixalus (Anura: Hyperoliidae) from south-eastern Africa. Durban Museum Novitates: 203-220.

Pickersgill, M. 2000. The ethology and systematics of eastern and southern African savanna Afrixalus (Anura: Hyperoliidae). Unpublished MSc thesis, University of Leeds.

Pickersgill, M. 2005. The taxonomy and ethology of the Afrixalus stuhlmanni superspecies (Anura: Hyperoliidae). Steenstrupia: 1-38.

Pickersgill, M. 2007. Frog Search. Results of Expeditions to Southern and Eastern Africa. Edition Chimaira, Frankfurt am Main.

Poynton, J.C. and Broadley, D.G. 1987. Amphibia Zambesiaca. 3. Rhacophoridae and Hyperoliidae. Annals of the Natal Museum: 161-229.

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

Telford, S.R. 1982. Aspects of mate recognition and social behaviour in a sub-tropical frog community. PhD thesis, University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg.

Wager, V.A. 1986. Frogs of South Africa, 2nd edition. Delta Books, Craighall.

Citation: IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group. 2013. Afrixalus delicatus. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2013: e.T56059A3034176. . Downloaded on 30 November 2015.
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