This species is known only from Ooty and its surroundings in the Nilgiri Hills in the Western Ghats of Tamil Nadu, India, where it has been recorded at an elevation of between 1,700 and 2,000 m asl.
Habitat and Ecology
It is a terrestrial species associated with montane tropical moist evergreen forest, but it can also be found in grasslands and modified areas close to the forest; however, it is not clear whether populations can persist in these areas. In forests it is found in leaf-litter and under ground cover. It reproduces through direct development, and the eggs are deposited under stones (Dubois 1986, Bossuyt and Dubois 2001).
The range is continuous and it is one of the most common species in the Nilgiri hills (Biju 2001). However, the population is generally believed to be declining.
The main threat to this species is habitat loss through the conversion of forest to plantations and the development of regional infrastructure.
It has been recorded from a number of protected areas in the Nilgiri Hills, including Mukkurthi National Park.
Red List Status
Listed as Endangered because its Extent of Occurrence is less than 5,000 km2, its distribution is severely fragmented, and there is continuing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat.
This species was recently elevated to species status by Bossuyt and Dubois (2001). Philautus punctatus and P. melanensis (collected by Rao in Karnataka) are considered to be synonyms of this species (Bossuyt and Dubois 2001), but further studies are required to confirm this relationship (S.D. Biju pers. comm.).
Biju, S.D., Dasaramji Buddhe, G., Dutta, S., Vasudevan, K., Srinivasulu, C. & Vijayakumar, S.P. 2004. Raorchestes tinniens. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2004: e.T58926A86247871. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2004.RLTS.T58926A11857942.en .Downloaded on 21 November 2018