Rana megapoda

Subgenus: Pantherana
family: Ranidae
Taxonomic Notes: This species was placed in the genus Lithobates by Frost et al. (2006). However, Yuan et al. (2016, Systematic Biology, doi: 10.1093/sysbio/syw055) showed that this action created problems of paraphyly in other genera. Yuan et al. (2016) recognized subgenera within Rana for the major traditional species groups, with Lithobates used as the subgenus for the Rana palmipes group. AmphibiaWeb recommends the optional use of these subgenera to refer to these major species groups, with names written as Rana (Aquarana) catesbeiana, for example.
Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN (Red List) Status Vulnerable (VU)
Other International Status None
National Status None
Regional Status None

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Mexico



View distribution map using BerkeleyMapper.

From the IUCN Red List Species Account:


Range Description

This species occurs from southern Nayarit and western Jalisco, east to northern Michoacán, and southern Guanajuato, Mexico. It occurs from 823-1,520m asl.

Habitat and Ecology

This species is predominantly an aquatic species that inhabits and breeds in permanent lakes, rivers and pools in shrubland and pine-oak forest.


It was previously a common species, but there has been a recent decline particularly in the southern part of its distribution.

Population Trend


Major Threats

Water pollution is a major threat to this predominantly aquatic species. It is also harvested for food in parts of its range, in particular in the south, a threat that is thought to be increasing. In addition, there is widespread habitat destruction and degradation through much of its range, primarily as a result of logging of its pine-oak forest habitat.

Conservation Actions

The range of this species does not include any protected areas, and improved protection and maintenance of forest habitat in the species' range is required. It is also necessary to ensure that offtake of this species from the wild for human consumption is managed sustainably. This species is protected by Mexican law under the "Special Protection" category (Pr).

Red List Status

Vulnerable (VU)


Listed as Vulnerable because of an observed population decline, estimated to be more than 30% over the last three generations, due to over-exploitation, water pollution, and habitat destruction and degradation.


Georgina Santos-Barrera, Oscar Flores-Villela 2004. Lithobates megapoda. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2004: e.T58662A11806848. .Downloaded on 23 February 2019


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