AMPHIBIAWEB
Odontobatrachus natator
family: Odontobatrachidae

© 2014 M.-O. Rödel (1 of 5)

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Cote d'Ivoire, Guinea, Sierra Leone

View distribution map using BerkeleyMapper.


Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN (Red List) Status Near Threatened (NT)
See IUCN account.
CITES
Other International Status None
National Status None
Regional Status None

   

From the Encyclopedia of Life account:

Etymology

This species is named for the Latin 'natator' meaning swimmer.


Author: Zimkus, Breda
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Taxonomic Notes

J.L. Amiet (in Rödel, 2004) and Perret (1984) suggest that this species does not belong in the genus Petropedetes.


Author: Zimkus, Breda
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Distribution

This species occurs in the hilly parts of West Africa in Sierra Leone, Liberia, Guinea, and Côte d’Ivoire (Rödel, 2004).


Author: Zimkus, Breda
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Morphology

Tongue is rather feebly notched behind, without conical papilla. Vomerine teeth are in two small groups close together behind the level of the choanae. Head is strongly depressed, a little broader than long. Snout is rounded, shorter than the orbit, with obtuse canthus rostralis and nearly vertical, concave loreal region. Interorbital space is as broad as the upper eyelid. Tympanum is moderately distinct, barely half the diameter of the eye. Fingers are moderately elongate, much depressed, with large, cordiform terminal disks. First finger is shorter than the second. Toes are rather short, broadly webbed to the disks, which are a slightly smaller than those of the fingers. Subarticular and inner metatarsal tubercles are feebly prominent. The tibio-tarsal articulation reaches to between the eye and the tip of the snout. The tibia is half as long as the head and body. The foot is about two-fifths the length of the head and body. Dorsum is covered with round granules intermixed with elongate warts. Ventral parts are smooth. Males have an internal vocal sac, a sharp tooth-like process at the symphysial extremity of each ramus of the mandible, and a more or less distinct large oval gland on the lower side of the thigh. Dorsum is olive-brownwith round darker spots on the body. Cross-bars are present on the limbs. Ventral parts are brown (Boulenger, 1905).


Author: Zimkus, Breda
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Size

Holotype from measured 55 mm from snout to vent (Boulenger, 1905).


Author: Zimkus, Breda
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Habitat and Ecology

It is found only in forested hilly country (near sea level up to 1,400m asl.) and lives in or near water (Rödel, 2004).


Author: Zimkus, Breda
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Population Biology

Although it is patchily distributed, it is very abundant where it occurs, for example on the Freetown Peninsula in Sierra Leone (Rödel, 2004).


Author: Zimkus, Breda
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Activity and Special Behaviors

The frog is a powerful swimmer and jumper, and clings to rocks, roots of trees, by means of its digital disks (Boulenger, 1905).


Author: Zimkus, Breda
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Reproduction

It breeds in fast-flowing streams. The eggs are laid on land, and the larvae attach themselves by means of suckers to rocks in waterfalls and rapids (Rödel, 2004).


Author: Zimkus, Breda
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

IUCN Red List Category and Justification of Conservation Status

The IUCN Red List (2009) categorizes this species as Near Threatened since the species depends on streams in rainforest, and so its Area of Occupancy is probably not much greater than 2,000 km2, and the extent and quality of its habitat is declining, thus making the species close to qualifying for Vulnerable (Rödel, 2004).


Author: Zimkus, Breda
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Trends

Populations of this species are decreasing (Rödel, 2004).


Author: Zimkus, Breda
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Threats

It is presumably threatened by the loss of forest habitat due to agricultural development, logging and expanding human settlements. In some places it is also adversely affected by mining activities, for example on the Simandou Range, and on Mount Nimba (Rödel, 2004).


Author: Zimkus, Breda
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Conservation Actions and Management

It occurs in a few protected areas, including Mont Sangbe National Park in Côte d’Ivoire (Rödel, 2004).


Author: Zimkus, Breda
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/