AMPHIBIAWEB
Cacosternum nanum
Dwarf dainty frog
family: Pyxicephalidae
subfamily: Cacosterninae
Taxonomic Notes: Following Channing et al. (2013; Zootaxa 3701: 518-550), we include Cacosternum poyntoni as a junior synonym of C. nanum.

© 2011 Martin Pickersgill (1 of 6)
Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN (Red List) Status Least Concern (LC)
CITES
Other International Status None
National Status None
Regional Status None

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Mozambique, South Africa, Swaziland

 

View distribution map using BerkeleyMapper.

   

From the Encyclopedia of Life account:

Morphology

Wager (1986) reported that metamorphosed froglets of C. nanum leave the water 17 days after hatching, which may be the quickest growth to metamorphosis known in any frog (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).


Author: Scott, E.
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Habitat and Ecology

C. nanum inhabits a wide variety of vegetation types in the Fynbos, Savanna, Grassland, Thicket and Forest biomes, occurring in areas of relatively high rainfall (Van Dijk 1971; Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).


Author: Scott, E.
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Associations

C. nanum has been reported to feed on mosquitoes in captivity (Wager 1965), and the species probably plays an important role in the control of small insects in undisturbed habitats. Predators have not been recorded (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).

C. nanum is absent from higher altitudes along the escarpment, where it is replaced C. parvum. Although they may occur in close proximity to each other, there are no confirmed records of their being syntopic (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).


Author: Scott, E.
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Activity and Special Behaviors

Wager (1965) found that during dry periods these frogs aestivate below the surface, sometimes emerging in large numbers after heavy rain (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).


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

Advertisement Call

Males call mainly from sheltered sites in deeper water. Calling males are distinctly territorial, loudly warning encroaching males by means of a territorial call that differs from their typical advertisement call. On warm, drizzly days or after rain, they may begin calling in the mid-morning, although they usually commence in the late afternoon and continue well into the evening (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).


Author: Scott, E.
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Reproduction

Breeding sites include small ponds, dams, vleis, streams, rain pools alongside roads, inundated grass and pasture (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).


Author: Scott, E.
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

IUCN Red List Category and Justification of Conservation Status

C. nanum is one of the most common frogs in its range and, in the wet season, it can be heard calling from almost every rut, drainage ditch and small pond. It is known from many protected areas and is not threatened (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).


Author: Scott, E.
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/