The only reliable record of this species comes from a single locality within Ambohitantely Special Reserve (Vences et al. 2010), where it was found at an altitude of 1,580 m asl. This reserve encompasses the remaining forest fragments in this area of Madagascar, and it is likely that this species is genuinely confined to the protected area (M. Vences pers. comm. December 2010). The extent of occurrence (EOO) is 29 km2.
Habitat and Ecology
This is a species of high-altitude forest. Animals have been found on tree trunks several meters above the ground, and are active in drier conditions than many other frogs (Vences et al. 2010). As with other congeners, it is presumed to breed by larval development in water-filled tree holes.
Based on reports of calling activity (Vences et al. 2010), this species appears common and widespread within its small range. Subpopulations are, however, likely to be small and isolated as a result of fragmentation of its forest habitat and studies are needed to confirm this and quantify the degree of isolation (M. Vences pers. comm. December 2010). Due to ongoing declines in the extent and quality of habitat, the population is suspected to be decreasing.
The forest is disappearing very rapidly at its only known locality due to the impacts of fire, illegal woodcutting by local people, and overgrazing by livestock. This species has a small range and is apparently restricted to high-elevation habitats. No other suitable habitat is found anywhere nearby and, as of 2015, habitat loss is continuing and this species is likely to disappear unless this can be addressed (D. Vallan & M.D. Scherz pers. comm. 2015).
This species is only known from Ambohitantely Special Reserve. However it is very poorly protected, small, isolated and heavily threatened by human activities (Vences et al. 2010).
Improved management of the reserve and protection of the remaining habitat of this species is clearly urgently needed. Reforestation would also be vital for the habitat, and ex-situ conservation should be considered (M.D. Scherz pers. comm., November 2015).
Research is needed into this frog's distribution and population trends, life history, ecology and threats.
Red List Status
Critically Endangered (CR)
Listed as Critically Endangered because its extent of occurrence (EOO) is 29 km2, it occurs in a single threat-defined location, and there is continuing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat within Ambohitantely Special Reserve.
Anodonthyla vallani was recognised as a distinct species by Vences et al. (2010), having previously been confused with A. nigrigularis.
IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group 2016. Anodonthyla vallani. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T190944A84185349. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-1.RLTS.T190944A84185349.en .Downloaded on 16 January 2019