Brachycephalus pernix is a very minute frog, very bufoniform in appearance with short robust arms and legs. The coloration in this species is rather uniquely patterned. The head is orange with black blotches (except for eyes and surrounding areas which are black), the dorsum of body , forearm, arm, knee, heel, and foot are orange as well; lateral surfaces of body, anal region and legs are black. Black stains are also present on arms. Dermal ossofication above the vertebral column is absent in this species (present in B. ephippium). Head is very round in dorsal and lateral aspect. Canthus rostralis faintly distinct, tympanum is not visible externally, and eyes do not project above the dorsal border of head. Vomerine teeth are absent. This is a relatively "small" species, males measuring 12-13.3 mm and females 14.1-15.8 mm SVL. Relative finger lenghts are 4<1<2<3, toes are 2<3<4 (digits 1 and 5 are not visible externally, but are present beneath epidermis). Pectoral girdle is completely ossified (Pombal Jr. et al 1998).
Distribution and Habitat
Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Brazil
Only found in Morretes, State of Parana, Brazil and the type locality at Morro Anhangava, in Serra da Baitaca, Conjunto Marumbi (1400 m), Municipality of Quatro Barras, State of Parana, Brazil. They are found in shady forested areas with thick leaf litter.
Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
Brachycephalus pernix is active by day. Some were found on leaf litter 10-15 cm thick! Clutch and vocalizations unknown.
Possible reasons for amphibian decline
General habitat alteration and loss
Habitat modification from deforestation, or logging related activities
Pombal, J. P., Jr., Wistuba, E. M., and Bornschein, M. R. (1998). ''A new species of brachycephalid (Anura) from the Atlantic rainforest of Brazil.'' Journal of Herpetology, 32(1), 70-74.
Written by Raul E. Diaz (lissamphibia AT gmail.com), AWeb guy
First submitted 2004-06-03
Edited by Tate Tunstall (2004-08-12)
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Citation: AmphibiaWeb: Information on
amphibian biology and conservation. [web application]. 2013. Berkeley, California:
(Accessed: Dec 6, 2013).
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