This species is known from only two localities (and threat-defined locations) 50 km apart from each other, in the mountainous region of Espírito Santo state, southeastern Brazil. The type locality is the State Park of Forno Grande (800–1,128 m asl), municipality of Castelo (Faivovich et al. 2010). Another population was recently detected from “Serra das Torres”, municipality of Mimoso do Sul (600 m asl)(material collected by Jane C.F. de Oliveira; R. Ferreira and T. Silva-Soares pers. comm. April 2011). Its extent of occurrence is currently estimated to be 3,025 km² (R. Ferreira and T. Silva-Soares pers. comm. April 2011). It is likely that S. belloni may occur a little more widely and also between the known localities, although this requires confirmation (R. Ferreira and T. Silva-Soares pers. comm. April 2011). Should it occur in forests, it could be undergoing a reduction in its extent of occurrence, given a reduction in forested areas over the last decades in this region of the Atlantic rainforest; however, its occupation of this habitat is so far unverified (R. Ferreira and T. Silva-Soares pers. comm. April 2011).
Habitat and Ecology
This species occurs in open inselberg areas in a montane region. It is found inside bromeliads and is likely to spend its entire life associated with them (R. Ferreira and T. Silva-Soares pers. comm. April 2011). Silva-Soares et al. (2010) found adults and tadpoles in terrestrial bromeliads, either on soil, grass or rock outcrops. It uses the water stored within the bromeliad axils as a reproductive site to lay eggs, and metamorphosis from tadpole to adult also occurs inside these plants (R. Ferreira and T. Silva-Soares pers. comm. April 2011). It is not known whether this species is tolerant to habitat disturbance.
This frog appears to be abundant at the type locality (R. Ferreira and T. Silva-Soares pers. comm. April 2011). However, as it was described recently it is not possible to determine its population trend. Its population is considered to be severely fragmented given that its habitat is patchy and fragmented, its dispersal capacity is believed to be low due to its habitat specialization and over half of the known population is found in small isolated habitat patches.
The bromeliads that this species uses for reproduction are intensely over-exploited in the gardening industry (Faivovich et al. 2010), but are not collected inside the state park (R. Ferreira and T. Silva-Soares pers. comm. April 2011). There has also been a reduction of forest habitats in the Atlantic forest over the last decades, which could also impact this species' distribution if it were to occur in bromeliads within forested areas (R. Ferreira and T. Silva-Soares pers. comm. April 2011).
Although this frog occurs inside a well protected area (State Park of Forno Grande) this area is quite small (730 ha = 7.3 km²), so the enlargement of this reserve as well as the creation of new ones would help safeguard this species (R. Ferreira and T. Silva-Soares pers. comm. April 2011). Scinax belloni occurs in an intensely fragmented region which should have a restoration programme to connect forest fragments to guarantee the contact of isolated populations (R. Ferreira and T. Silva-Soares pers. comm. April 2011). An outreach programme aiming to educate local farmers about the importance of bromeliads and the negative consequence of bromeliad collection for the native fauna is also recommended (R. Ferreira and T. Silva-Soares pers. comm. April 2011). More information is needed on this species' distribution, population status and natural history.
Red List Status
Listed as Endangered because its extent of occurrence is 3,025 km², it is known from two threat-defined locations, its population is severely fragmented, and there is a continuing decline in the extent and quality of its bromeliad microhabitat in Espírito Santo state, Brazil.
IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group 2011. Scinax belloni. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2011: e.T195500A8974730. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2011-2.RLTS.T195500A8974730.en .Downloaded on 17 December 2018