AmphibiaWeb - Bolitoglossa marmorea


(Translations may not be accurate.)

Bolitoglossa marmorea (Tanner & Brame, 1961)

Subgenus: Eladinea
family: Plethodontidae
subfamily: Hemidactyliinae
genus: Bolitoglossa

© 2010 Division of Herpetology, University of Kansas (1 of 2)
Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN Red List Status Account Endangered (EN)
National Status None
Regional Status None
Access Conservation Needs Assessment Report .



View distribution map in BerkeleyMapper.


Diagnosis: Bolitoglossa marmorea is a moderately sized salamander (adults range from 128 to 134 mm in total length; males measure 59-66 mm in standard length, while females are 60-72 mm in standard length; the tail is moderately long at 48-56% of total length) with long limbs and large, moderately webbed feet bearing subterminal pads. Maxillary teeth number 48-80; vomerine teeth number 22-38. Limb interval is 0-0.5 costal folds in males, 1.5-2.5 costal folds in females. Usually 13 costal grooves. It is purplish-brown with yellow flecking and small yellow spots. Similar to B. sooyorum morphologically but distinct molecularly (Savage 2002).

Distribution and Habitat

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Costa Rica, Panama


View distribution map in BerkeleyMapper.
Costa Rica and western Panama, on lower montane and montane slopes of the southern Cordillera de Talamanca-Barú, at 1,920-3,444 m asl. Collected from under rocks in the crater of Volcán Baru, western Panama (Tanner and Brame 1961). It is also associated with moss mats covering tree trunks and branches (Wake 1987).

Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
This species is arboreal and is active at night, climbing on mossy trunks and tree limbs (Wake et al. 1973; Savage 2002). It hides under rocks during the day (Savage 2002). Presumed to breed by direct development (Stuart et al. 2008).

Trends and Threats
This species was thought to be common but has not been seen in nearly a decade. It can survive in degraded habitats, but severe habitat loss due to agricultural expansion and/or fire is a threat. It occurs in two protected areas: Parque Internacional La Amistad in Panama and Costa Rica, and Parque Nacional Volcán Barú in Panama. Survey work is needed (Stuart et al. 2008).

Possible reasons for amphibian decline

General habitat alteration and loss
Habitat modification from deforestation, or logging related activities
Intensified agriculture or grazing


First described by Tanner and Brame (1961). The species name marmorea refers to its marbled color pattern.

A Spanish-language species account can be found at the website of Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad (INBio).


Savage, J. M. (2002). The Amphibians and Reptiles of Costa Rica:a herpetofauna between two continents, between two seas. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, Illinois, USA and London.

Stuart, S., Hoffmann, M., Chanson, J., Cox, N., Berridge, R., Ramani, P., Young, B. (eds) (2008). Threatened Amphibians of the World. Lynx Edicions, IUCN, and Conservation International, Barcelona, Spain; Gland, Switzerland; and Arlington, Virginia, USA.

Tanner, W. W., and Brame, A. H. Jr. (1961). ''Description of a new species of salamander from Panamá.'' Great Basin Naturalist, 21, 23-26.

Wake, D. B. (1987). ''Adaptive radiation of salamanders in Middle American cloud forests.'' Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden, 74(2), 242-264.

Wake, D. B., Brame, A. H. and Duellman, W. E. (1973). ''New species of salamanders, genus Bolitoglossa, from Panama.'' Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County - Contributions in Science, 248, 1-19.

Originally submitted by: Nelly Chow (first posted 2009-11-02)
Edited by: Kellie Whittaker (2011-03-11)

Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2011 Bolitoglossa marmorea <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed May 20, 2024.

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Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2024. <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 20 May 2024.

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