Leptopelis rufus
family: Arthroleptidae

© 2014 Brian Freiermuth (1 of 13)

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Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN (Red List) Status Least Concern (LC)
See IUCN account.
Other International Status None
National Status None
Regional Status None


A very large, fully webbed Leptopelis (males 45-55 mm, females 74-87 mm) from the forests in central Africa with a rather small tympanum (discs larger than tympanum) and large choanae. Dorsum brown with darker irregular transverse bars. 3-4 bars on tibia. Iris golden. Males much smaller than females. Separated from L. palmatus by Perret, mainly based on its smaller tympanum. L. rufus is similar to the West African L. macrotis which, however has a larger tympanum.

L. rufus has been collected from branches overhanging a swift-flowing stream in forest. A pair in copula was taken in the low vegetation near a small stream.

Distribution and Habitat

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Cameroon, Congo, the Democratic Republic of the, Gabon, Nigeria

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A forest species, found from easternmost Nigeria, western Cameroun, Congo to western R. D. Congo. Seems to be absent from central and eastern Cameroun.

Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
The males call from branches in the forest or from Raphia palms, most often above small streams. The call is a series - about ten - long cries "yiin". An analysis shows that the single call has a duration of about 0.3 sec and consists of a large number of harmonics, about 500 cps. apart, with a strongly varying frequency, perhaps a case of frequency modulation otherwise rare in frogs.

Apart from this, Amiet has observed another call when a male approaches a female. It is a series of quiet, sonorous figures, sounding like the mew of a young cat.

This account was taken from "Treefrogs of Africa" by Arne Schiøtz with kind permission from Edition Chimaira publishers, Frankfurt am Main.


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

Written by Arne Schiøtz (arne AT, *
First submitted 2001-01-31
Edited by Kellie Whittaker (2008-09-10)

Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2008 Leptopelis rufus <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Oct 22, 2016.

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Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2016. <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 22 Oct 2016.

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