It is only known from its type locality in Andohahela National Park, southeastern Madagascar, between 247-350m asl (Köhler et al., 2015). It is assumed to also occur in a rainforest fragment near Nahampoana, about 25 km southeast of the type locality, and the adjacent Tsitongambarika forest (Köhler et al., 2015), so these lower elevation localities have been included in its range map. It is suspected to occur up to 900m asl and allopatrically with A. madagascariensis and therefore could occur as far north as the region of the Vohitrambo River. Sequence data from specimens collected at Marovato (at 692m asl) also indicate possible presence and wider distribution of this species in rainforests along the east coast, however this is highly unlikely and further sampling is necessary for confirmation (Köhler et al., 2015). Therefore, the limits of the species remain unknown because its was only recently described and the southern rainforests are poorly surveyed. The extent of occurrence of its current range map is 705 km2.
Habitat and Ecology
It occurs in the leaf litter of primary rainforest and has been recorded in degraded bamboo forest. Calling males and females in reproductive state were found at the edges of a shallow pond and the species is therefore presumed to breed by larval development. This is a relatively large species - especially the females - making it easily distinguishable from others in the area and, similar to congeners, it is diurnal and easily found (F. Glaw pers. comm. November 2015).
There little information on its population size and trends, but it seems to be relatively abundant within its known range. However due to continuing decline in the extent and quality of the habitat, the population is suspected to be decreasing.
Southern forests are subject to ongoing heavy deforestation, for timber and charcoal production, and regular burning to maintain cattle pasture. There are ongoing mining operations in the area, but this primarily affects littoral forests rather than at the altitides where this species occurs.
This species occurs in Andohahela National Park (Köhler et al., 2015) - where deforestation is encroaching into the boundaries of the park - and Tsitongambarika is a Classified Forest and has been proposed for further protection.
The species' forest habitat both inside and outside the protected areas requires improved protection.
Further work is required on the species' distribution, and population size and trends.
Red List Status
This species is listed as Endangered because it has a restricted extent of occurrence (EOO) of 705 km2, it occurs in fewer than five threat-defined locations and there is ongoing decline in the quality and extent of its forest habitat.
IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group 2016. Aglyptodactylus australis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T84500429A84576871. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-1.RLTS.T84500429A84576871.en