AmphibiaWeb - Bolitoglossa splendida
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Bolitoglossa splendida
Splendid Web-footed Salamander
Subgenus: Eladinea
family: Plethodontidae
subfamily: Hemidactyliinae
genus: Bolitoglossa
 
Species Description: Boza-Oviedo E, Rovito SM, Chaves G, Garcia-Rodriguez A, Artavia LG, Bolanos F, Wake DB 2012. Salamanders from the eastern Cordillera de Talamanca, Costa Rica, with descriptions of five new species (Plethodontidae: Bolitoglossa, Nototriton, and Oedipina) and natural history notes from recent expeditions. Zootaxa 3309: 36- 61.

© 2012 Alex Monro and Eduardo Boza (1 of 7)
Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN Red List Status Account Data Deficient (DD)
CITES No CITES Listing
National Status None
Regional Status None
Access Conservation Needs Assessment Report .

   

 

View distribution map in BerkeleyMapper.

Description
Bolitoglossa splendida is a robust, medium-sized salamander described from one adult female that measured 47.8 mm in standard length. The tail is mostly absent from this specimen, preventing an accurate total length measurement. The head is broad for its size with its length being 5.9 mm. The snout is blunt, broad, rounded, and of moderate length. The species has compact nostrils with nasolabial protuberances, which appear as small, knob-like protrusions. The eyes are relatively small, do extend further than the sides of the head, and cannot be seen from the ventral view. The teeth are of moderate size with 57 maxillary teeth, 6 premaxillary teeth, and 28 vomerine teeth. The limbs are short with moderate hands and feet. The short digits are distinguishable and rounded with distinct subdigital pads on the longer digits. Digit webbing is incomplete, stretching from the first and second phalanges of the longest digits, and the webbing is more complete in the foot than hand. When ordering the fingers and toes by length, the relative lengths are 3 > 4 > 2 > 1 and 3 > 4 > 2 > 5 > 1, respectively (Boza-Oviedo et al. 2012).

Bolitoglossa splendida is close in size to other Bolitoglossa species like B. gomezi, B. pesrubra, and B. subpalmata. However, it has a relatively broad head that differentiates from B. bramei, B. gracilis, B. gomezi, B. pesrubra, B. subpalmata, and B. tica (Boza-Oviedo et al. 2012).

Bolitoglossa splendida is jet black coloration on the dorsal and lateral areas but paler on the ventral area. There is a dorsolateral band, varying between bright red or orange-red, that begins on the back of the head and extends to the base of the tail. The band is split at the base of the head into two stripes that extend to the back of the eyelids. The nasolabial protuberances are pale in contrast to the black coloration of the skin. The band has no breaks in it but has some melanin speckling. The lateral edge of the band is irregular. Bright yellow spots can be observed unevenly distributed on the lateral and ventrolateral surfaces (Boza-Oviedo et al. 2012).

Distribution and Habitat

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Costa Rica

 

View distribution map in BerkeleyMapper.
The type locality of B. splendida is in eastern Costa Rica along the Río Lori in the Cordillera de Talamanca. The species was specifically found below Cerro Arbolado within a region of mature cloud forest flora, meaning the habitat is often moist, with low cloud cover, abundant with mosses and ferns, and dense canopy making the forest floor cooler (Boza-Oviedo et al. 2012).

Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
The type specimen for this species was discovered on the leaf of a Heliconia sp. plant, and within 100 m of both the river and a stream in mid-day. It seemed to be active on a cooler day in the afternoon with heavy rain making most of the surrounding environment moist (Boza-Oviedo et al. 2012).

Other vegetation in this species' habitat is dominated by members of the Araceae, Heliconiaceae, Marantaceae, Begoniaceae, Acanthaceae, Arecaceae, Commelinaceae, Rubiaceae, Urticaceae, Melastomataceae, Bromeliaceae, Ericaceae, and Piperaceae families along with bryophytes and ferns (Boza-Oviedo et al. 2012).

Trends and Threats
The type locality of this species is close to an established trail in eastern Costa Rica (Boza-Oviedo et al. 2012). Potential threats to this species include predators (natural or introduced), introduced competitors, disease, and loss of genetic diversity from small population phenomena (IUCN 2020). There is also concern that the potential introduction of the chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans, via the pet trade could have negative consequences for this species in the future (Feldmeier et al. 2016).

Possible reasons for amphibian decline

General habitat alteration and loss
Predators (natural or introduced)
Introduced competitors
Disease
Loss of genetic diversity from small population phenomena

Comments

Based on Bayesian and Maximum Likelihood analyses on 16S and cyt b mtDNA, B. spendida, forms a polytomy with B. gomezi, the clade composed of B. bramei, B. kamuk, and B. pesrubra, and the clade composed of B. gracilis, B. subpalmata, and B. tica (Boza-Oviedo et al. 2012).

The species epithet, “splendida” comes from the Latin word, “splendidus,” which means “distinctly vivid in appearance” (Boza-Oviedo et al. 2012).

References

Boza-Oviedo, E., Rovito, S.M., Chaves, G., Garcia-Rodriguez, A., Artavia, L.G., Bolanos, F., Wake, D.B. (2012). ''Salamanders from the eastern Cordillera de Talamanca, Costa Rica, with descriptions of five new species (Plethodontidae: Bolitoglossa, Nototriton, and Oedipina) and natural history notes from recent expeditions.'' Zootaxa, 3309, 36 - 61.

Feldmeier, S., Schefczyk, L., Wagner, N., Heinemann, G., Veith, M., Lötters, S., Gratwicke, B. (2016). “Exploring the distribution of the spreading lethal salamander chytrid fungus in its invasive range in Europe - a macroecological approach.” PloS one, 11(10), e0165682. [link]

IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group. (2020). "Bolitoglossa splendida." The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2020: e.T50927240A50927269. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2020- 3.RLTS.T50927240A50927269.en Downloaded February 2022



Originally submitted by: Megan Swanson, Ernest Walker (2022-05-18)
Description by: Megan Swanson, Ernest Walker (updated 2022-05-18)
Distribution by: Megan Swanson, Ernest Walker (updated 2022-05-18)
Life history by: Megan Swanson, Ernest Walker (updated 2022-05-18)
Trends and threats by: Megan Swanson, Ernest Walker (updated 2022-05-18)
Comments by: Megan Swanson, Ernest Walker (updated 2022-05-18)

Edited by: Ann T. Chang (2022-05-18)

Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2022 Bolitoglossa splendida: Splendid Web-footed Salamander <https://amphibiaweb.org/species/7819> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Aug 18, 2022.



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Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2022. <https://amphibiaweb.org> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 18 Aug 2022.

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