This species is currently known only from a tributary of the Nam Tha River, in Nam Tha Commune, Van Ban District, Lao Cai Province, in northern Vietnam, at 640m asl (Bain et al., 2006). It is expected to occur more widely.
Habitat and Ecology
All records have been from along streams in submontane evergreen forest (Bain et al., 2006). It has been found on riverside banks, on rocks in the torrent, and on low-lying branches (0.5–1 m above ground) adjacent to the water (Bain et al., 2006). In the area where R. cucae is found, the Nam Tha is completely forested on both sides (Bain et al., 2006). All rivers and streams in the area are geomorphologically variable: bottoms vary from rocky to sandy; banks vary from steep and rocky to low with humus and vegetation (Bain et al., 2006). Rana cucae has also been found inside the forest within 100m of water on the forest floor, on logs, and in trees (up to 4m above ground) (Bain et al., 2006). This forest is composed of stands of mixed hardwood, bamboo and banana (Bain et al., 2006). Males were calling from leaves on small branches (0.5–4 m above the ground) directly beside streams (Bain et al., 2006). Tadpoles are unknown (Bain et al., 2006), but presumably develop in rivers.
It is a locally abundant species in its only known site (R. Bain, pers. comm.).
The only locality known so far for this species might no longer exist, as it was being surveyed for a hydro-electric project at the time of collection (R. Bain, pers. comm.). The planned high-water mark of the river valley was dozens of metres above the collection sites of this species (R. Bain, pers. comm.). The species is probably also affected by forest loss for agriculture and logging (R. Bain, pers. comm.).
It is not known from any protected areas. Surveys are needed to determine its geographic distribution, abundance, ecological requirements, threats and conservations needs.
We follow Stuart (2008) in assigning this species to the genus Amolops.
Raoul Bain 2008. Amolops cucae. In: IUCN 2014