This species is known from eastern Puerto Rico as well as the western mountains, at an altitudinal range of 45-630 m asl.
Habitat and Ecology
It is an aquatic species, restricted to mountain streams, with a preference for rocky torrents in closed mesic forest. It is known to call from boulders, banks, and waterfalls, and to breed by direct development.
Formerly known to be abundant in eastern Puerto Rico as well as the western mountains, it has not been seen since 1976 or 1988 (Hedges and Díaz 2009). Habitats where it once occurred have been surveyed repeatedly by experts at different times of year (including the rainy season), without success, and it is now considered to be almost certainly extinct.
The main cause of the decline of this species appears to be related to the synergistic effects of chytridiomycosis and climate change, although invasive predators might also have had an impact.
This species formerly occurred in El Yunque National Forest, but it has not been recorded recently from this area. Further survey work is required to determine the population status of this species and whether or not it survives in the wild. In view of the risk of chytridiomycosis, any surviving individuals might need to form the basis for the establishment of an ex-situ population.
Blair Hedges, Rafael Joglar, Richard Thomas 2010. Eleutherodactylus karlschmidti. In: IUCN 2014