Asterophrys turpicola is a large microhylid frog with adults reaching 65 mm. This frog has a broad head, as wide as the body. It has a large mouth and gape. Distinctive fleshy spines protrude from the eyelids. There are also a few spines on the lower jaw. A crest runs from the eyelid above the tympanum and down to the shoulder, on each side. There are warts on the limbs and sides of its body. Fingers and toes have expanded discs. The color is drab with brown and black shades (Zweifel 2003).
Distribution and Habitat
Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Indonesia, Papua New Guinea
A. turpicola is found from low to moderate elevation (up to 1000 m) in New Guinea, from the western end of Irian Jaya (Indonesia) to Papua New Guinea (Zweifel 2003; IUCN 2006). It also occurs on Yapen Island in Indonesia
(Stuart 2008). It inhabits the forest floor in lowland and foothill rainforest, but has been found in urban gardens as well
(Zweifel 2003; IUCN 2006).
Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
The New Guinea Bush Frog is known for its defensive behavior. When threatened, this frog inflates its body and gapes widely, exposing its blue tongue. If this is not sufficient to scare away the intruder, the frog will leap at and bite the potential predator, holding on for as long as several minutes (Zweifel 2003).
This species is likely to have direct development, but little is known about its reproductive behavior. The males call from subterranean hiding places. The adult diet consists of lizards, insects, and other frogs
Trends and Threats
This species is not threatened (IUCN 2006).
IUCN, Conservation International, and NatureServe. 2006. Global Amphibian Assessment. www.globalamphibians.org. Accessed on 21 July 2007.
Zweifel, R. G. (2003). ''New Guinea bush frog, Asterophrys turpicola.'' Grzimek's Animal Life Encyclopedia, Volume 6, Amphibians. 2nd edition. M. Hutchins, W. E. Duellman, and N. Schlager, eds., Gale Group, Farmington Hills, Michigan.
Written by Peera Chantasirivisal (Kris818 AT berkeley.edu), UC Berkeley
First submitted 2005-10-25
Edited by Kellie Whittaker (2009-04-01)
Citation: AmphibiaWeb: Information on
amphibian biology and conservation. [web application]. 2013. Berkeley, California:
(Accessed: May 22, 2013).
AmphibiaWeb's policy on data use.