A large conspicuously coloured frog. M 60-65 mm, F 90-95 mm. Dorsum yellowish in males, red-orange in females, often with many small reticulations. In both sexes often with a rhomboid dark marking. Ventrally uniform whitish. Skin smooth with two dorsolateral folds. Tympanum rather indisctinct, about 1/3 of eye diameter. Tibiotarsal articulation reaches the tympanum. Fingertips not enlarged. A large inner metatarsal tubercle. No webbing on hands, weakly expressed webbing on feet (Glaw and Vences 2007).
Similar species: Very similar to D. antongilii and only distinguishable by the relatively faint colour differences (Glaw and Vences 2007).
Distribution and Habitat
Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Madagascar
This species occurs widely along the eastern rainforest belt of Madagascar. It is a very secretive species and probably occurs at many more localities than records indicate (Nussbaum et. al 2008). Located at Ambatovaky, Andekaleka, Ankay, Antsihanaka, Fierenana, Sambava, Soavala, Vevembe (Glaw and Vences 2007) from 150 to 900 m asl (Nussbaum et. al 2008).
Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
Habits: Reliably only known from primary forest, usually in areas that are relatively flat and where streams are slow-moving, forming large almost stagnant parts and side-ponds. At these sites specimens can be very common and easy to find, especially at night when they move on the forest floor. Many hundreds of sticky eggs are deposited in these ponds (Glaw and Vences 2007).
Calls: Similar to that of D. antongilii (Glaw and Vences 2007).
Trends and Threats
This species is listed as least concern because of its wide distribution, tolerance of a degree of habitat modification, presumed large population, and because it is unlikely to be declining fast enough to qualify for listing in a more threatened category.
It is not known from any protected areas and its forest habitat is receding due to subsistence agriculture, timber extraction, charcoal manufacture, and invasive spread of eucalyptus, livestock grazing and expanding human settlements. It is exploited commercially, but probably not at a level that seriously impacts populations. This exploitation results largely from the placement of its sister species, Dyscophus antongili (the Tomato Frog), on Appendix I of CITES. The trade in this species should be regulated through a quota (Nussbaum et. al 2008).
Possible reasons for amphibian decline
General habitat alteration and loss
Habitat modification from deforestation, or logging related activities
Intensified agriculture or grazing
Subtle changes to necessary specialized habitat
Intentional mortality (over-harvesting, pet trade or collecting)
Taken with permission from Glaw and Vences (2007).
Glaw, F., and Vences, M. (2007). Field Guide to the Amphibians and Reptiles of Madagascar. Third Edition. Vences and Glaw Verlag, Köln.
Nussbaum, R., Vences, M., and Cadle, J. (2008). Dyscophus guineti. In: IUCN 2008. 2008 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. www.iucnredlist.org. Downloaded on 08 April 2009.
Written by Miguel Vences and Frank Glaw (m.vences AT tu-bs.de), Assistant Professor and Curator of Vertebrates at the Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics in the Zoological Museum at the University of Amsterdam
First submitted 2000-12-13
Edited by Catherine Aguilar (2010-07-18)
Feedback or comments about this page.
Citation: AmphibiaWeb: Information on
amphibian biology and conservation. [web application]. 2016. Berkeley, California:
(Accessed: Jul 23, 2016).
AmphibiaWeb's policy on data use.