Bolitoglossa indio is a moderately small-sized but robust salamander (SVL 46.8 mm) The snout is truncate dorsally and rounded in profile. The head is broad, flat, and demarcated from the body. Labial protuberances are distinct. Eyes are moderate in size and protrude slightly. The postorbital groove is not well developed and does not reach the subocular groove. Bolitoglossa indio has a gular fold but lacks a sublingual fold. Within the oral cavity the premaxillary teeth (7) are located posterior to upper lip; maxillary teeth (48) reach eye level; and vomerine teeth (38) extend to the boundary of the choanae. The limbs are slender and moderately long; the adpressed limb interval is 3.5 costal folds. Digits of both hands and feet are fully webbed but lack subdigital pads. Digits that project slightly beyond webbing are broadly rounded. Fingers increase in length I,II=IV,III and toes increase from I,V,II,IV,III. The tail is medium sized (TL/SVL 74.4%) and slightly constricted basally. Tail shape is closely cylindrical to triangular anteriorly, becoming conical at about mid-length (Wake et al. 2008).
In life the dorsal surfaces of the head, body, and anterior of the tail are brown, with dark brown shadings. Many small brown spots cover the head. A pair of broad, irregular pale brown stripes extends from the upper eyelids to the base of the tail. Ventral surfaces are unmarked grayish brown, turning to light gray near the chest region. The ventral surface of the head is reddish brown and ventral surfaces of hands, feet, and limbs are grayish brown. Labial protuberances are pale gray (Wake et al. 2008).
Distribution and Habitat
Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Costa Rica, Nicaragua
Bolitoglossa indio is known only from the type locality Dos Bocas del Río Indio, within the lowlands of the Río San Juan area, southeastern Nicaragua, at 25 m asl. Specimens were found active on leaf litter in pristine lowland wet forest (Wake et al. 2008).
Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
Presumed direct developer as is the case for other members of the genus Bolitoglossa. The holotype was actively moving about on leaf litter at 1 pm, during the hottest part of the day when neither rain nor fog were present. As this is unusual behavior for salamanders, it is presumed that the specimen had fallen from its perch or was otherwise disturbed from a ground-level hiding place (Wake et al. 2008).
Possible reasons for amphibian decline
General habitat alteration and loss
Habitat modification from deforestation, or logging related activities
The species name indio refers to the type locality (Wake et al. 2008).
Wake, D. B., Sunyer, J., Sebastian, L., Hertz, A., Aleman, B. M., Robleto, S. J., and Kohler, G. (2008). ''Two new species of salamanders (genus Bolitoglossa) from southern Nicaragua.'' Senckenbergiana Biologica, 88, 319-328.
Originally submitted by: Henry Zhu (first posted 2009-02-17)
Edited by: Kellie Whittaker (2009-03-27)
Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2009 Bolitoglossa indio <https://amphibiaweb.org/species/7235> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Jan 30, 2023.
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Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2023. <https://amphibiaweb.org> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 30 Jan 2023.
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