This species is currently known only from the Cerro Sapo in south-western Darién Province, Panama. It is suspected that the species is more widely distributed, and may range through much of Parque Nacional Darién. It has been found at altitudes of 50-1,150m asl.
Habitat and Ecology
This is a terrestrial species of tropical montane and submontane forest. Breeding and larval development takes place in forest streams.
This species is locally common within its small range, and has been recorded as recently as 2003.
The main threats to the species are deforestation of habitat for agricultural use and general water pollution. Congeners are known to have virtually disappeared throughout much of Mesoamerica, probably due to chytridiomycosis, and this species might also be at risk from the disease, although it occurs at lower altitudes (the disease normally occurs at higher elevations in the tropics).
It has been recorded from Parque Nacional Darién. Further survey work is needed to establish the limits of the species' range, and additional research is needed to establish whether chytridiomycosis might be a threat.
Red List Status
Listed as Endangered because of a projected population decline, estimated to be more than 50% over the next ten years, inferred from declines in other high altitude Atelopus species in the same region, probably due to chytridiomycosis.
Frank Solís, Roberto Ibáñez, César Jaramillo, Querube Fuenmayor 2004. Atelopus certus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2004: e.T54497A11143926. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2004.RLTS.T54497A11143926.en