This species is known from two localities: the type locality (La Costa), and El Tambito, both localities on the western slope of the Cordillera Occidental of the Andes, in Cauca Department, Colombia, between 1,300 and 1,580m asl.
Habitat and Ecology
It is a terrestrial species found in montane forest, and which has not been recorded outside forest. Its breeding habits are not known, but presumably it breeds in streams like other species of the genus.
It is known from only a few specimens, and, despite survey work, has not been recorded since 1993.
The most serious risk to this species is chytridiomycosis, which has had a devastating impact on other high-altitude species of Atelopus. There is also a threat of pollution resulting from fumigation of the illegal crops grown in Parque Nacional Natural Munchique.
The two localities are on the border of Parque Nacional Natural Munchique, where it has been recorded from the private protected area of the El Tambito Proselva Foundation. Further survey work is required to determine the current population status of this species in the wild. Given the threat of chytridiomycosis, any surviving individuals might need to be maintained in captivity.
This species was previously confused with Atelopus longirostris and Atelopus lynchi, according to Rivero and Morales (1995).
Wilmar Bolívar, Andrés Acosta-Galvis, John Lynch, Stefan Lötters 2010. Atelopus famelicus. In: IUCN 2014