AmphibiaWeb - Pseudophilautus puranappu


(Translations may not be accurate.)

Pseudophilautus puranappu Wickramasinghe, Vidanapathirana, Rajeev, Ariyarathne, Chanaka, Priyantha, Bandara et al., 2013
Puran Appu's Shrub Frog; Puran Appuge panduru madiya
family: Rhacophoridae
subfamily: Rhacophorinae
genus: Pseudophilautus
Species Description: Wickramasinghe LJM, Vidanapathirana DR, Rajeev MDG, Ariyarathne SC, Chanaka AWA, Priyantha LLD, Bandara IN, Wickramasinghe N. 2013 Eight new species of Pseudophilautus (Amphibia: Anura: Rhacophoridae) from Sripada World Heritage Site (Peak Wilderness), a local amphibian hotspot in Sri Lanka. J Threatened Taxa 5:3789-3920.
Pseudophilautus puranappu
© 2020 Dayupathi Eranda Nipunika Mandawala (1 of 2)
Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN Red List Status Account Endangered (EN)
National Status None
Regional Status None


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Pseudophilautus puranappu is a moderate size frog with snout vent lengths of 33.6 – 34.2 mm in males and 51.5 mm in females. It has a large head that is concave on the top. The lateral side of the snout is rounded and truncate in dorsal view. It is also weakly rounded in the ventral. It has an elliptical eye that is oriented horizontally and has a very prominently displayed tympanum that is oval shaped and vertically oriented. The tongue is large with a bifurcate tip; lingual papilla and cone-shaped tubercles are present. The body is fairly elongate, with short arms. The lower-arm is relatively longer than the upper arm and the forearm is enlarged. All of the fingers are both long and thin, with the finger length of 1 < 2 < 4 < 3. The ends of the fingers are enlarged and have a round shape. Each finger has a disc with circum-marginal grooves. Fingers lack fringing, but vestigial webbing is present and the bottoms of the forelimbs have prominent tubercles. This species also has feet that are longer than the thigh with very thin toes. The relative lengths of the toes are 1 < 2 < 3 < 5 < 4 and all of the toes have fringing on the inside. There is additional external fringing on the metatarsal fold and toe 5. The toes have rounded tips and discs that contain circum-marginal grooves. The webbing on the feet is greater than that of the fingers, but less than half webbed. There are prominent tubercles on the bottoms of the feet, which are single and rounded. On the dorsum, the anterior portion is weakly shagreened with a few horny spinules and the posterior portion is tuberculate with a few horny spinules. On the ventral side, the belly is granular and the chest is weakly granular (Wickramasinghe et al. 2013).

This species can be distinguished by the combination of its moderate size, concave dorsal head, concave loreal region and concave internarial space rounded lateral snout, vomerine teeth, presence of nuptial pad and lingual papilla, absence of fringes on its fingers as well as calcar, smooth snout with a blunt tubercle, weakly shagreened dorsal thigh, horny spinules on the dorsal posterior as well as tubercles, and granular lower flank with upper flanks having tubercles (Wickramasinghe et al. 2013).

In life, the dorsum is a uniformly light brown color with a maroon band that longitudinally extends from the snout to the vent. This band resembles an hour-glass and get darker as the band continues to the vent. The forelimbs and hind limbs are a darker brown with a slight green hue, and there is a faint strip that lies longitudinally between the eyes. The lateral head is also a darker brown. In ethanol, the maroon becomes a blackish color, however the patterning stays with some fading (Wickramasinghe et al. 2013).

The specimens had some dorsal color variation. The maroon patch was consistent among types, but the side patches had colors ranging from a pink to a slight yellow (Wickramasinghe et al. 2013).

Distribution and Habitat

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Sri Lanka

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The species was collected and observed at Sripada (Peak Wilderness), Nuwara Eliya District, Central Province, Sri Lanka. It was found most abundantly at elevations of 2000 - 2100 m. It was also found at elevations as low as 1800 m (Wickramasinghe et al. 2013).

Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
This species is primarily nocturnal, but can also be found during the day on rocks that are in the shade. At night, they are normally found sitting on bushes that are about 1 meter high. In most cases it is seen in areas that lack canopy cover in disturbed areas. Additionally, all frogs of this genus are direct developers (Wickramasinghe et al. 2013).

Possible reasons for amphibian decline

General habitat alteration and loss
Habitat modification from deforestation, or logging related activities
Intensified agriculture or grazing
Habitat fragmentation

The species authority is: Wickramasinghe, Vidanapathirana, Rajeev, Ariyarathne, Chanaka, Priyantha, Bandara & Wickramasinghe (2013).

Pseudophilautus puranappu is named after Veera Puran Appu, who stood up against the British Empire and died for the freedom of Sri Lanka (Wickramasinghe et al. 2013).


Wickramasinghe, L.J.M., D.R. Vidanapathirana, M.D.G. Rajeev, S.C. Ariyarathne, A.W.A. Chanaka, L.L.D. Priyantha, I.N. Bandara & N. Wickramasinghe (2013). Eight new species of Pseudophilautus (Amphibia, Anura, Rhacophoridae) from Sripada World Heritage Site (Peak Wilderness), a local amphibian hotspot in Sri Lanka. Journal of Threatened Taxa 5(4): 3789–3920 [link]

Originally submitted by: Derek Shapiro (first posted 2013-06-17)
Edited by: David Wong and Ann T. Chang (2013-07-14)

Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2013 Pseudophilautus puranappu: Puran Appu's Shrub Frog; Puran Appuge panduru madiya <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Jul 15, 2024.

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Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2024. <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 15 Jul 2024.

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