AmphibiaWeb - Boulenophrys tuberogranulatus


(Translations may not be accurate.)

Boulenophrys tuberogranulatus
family: Megophryidae
subfamily: Megophryinae
genus: Boulenophrys
Species Description: Mo X, Shen Y, Li H, Wu X 2010 A new species of Megophrys (Amphibia: Anura: Megophryidae) from the northwestern Hunan Province, China. Current Zoology 56(4): 432-436.
Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN Red List Status Account
National Status None
Regional Status None


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Diagnosis: Megophrys tuberogranulatus can be distinguished by the following combination of characters: skin granular and tuberculated, with large tubercles on the dorsal sides of the thigh and the tibia, a relatively large inner metacarpal tubercle, an upper eyelid wider than the interorbital distance, relatively long hind limbs, and overlapping of the left and right calcaneal parts (Mo et al. 2010).

Description: This species has a small, moderately slender body, with male SVL ranging from 33.2-39.6 mm, and the single female specimen measuring 50.5 mm SVL. The head is approximately equal in length and width, and is slightly flattened. The snout is shield-like and short, projecting beyond the lower jaw. The canthus rostralis is distinct and the loreal region is concave. Nostrils are located halfway between the eye and snout tip, and are not noticeable in dorsal view. Interorbital distance is less than the width of the upper eyelid. Upper jaw has tiny, fine teeth. Vomerine teeth are lacking. Pupils are vertical. The tympanum is large, about 1/2 of the eye diameter, and distinct; it may be round or elliptical. Tongue is round and thick and "ping-pang bat" shaped, and lacks any notching behind. Forelimbs are slender, with the forearm longer than the humerus. Fingers are slender and have slightly dilated tips. Relative finger length is III>IV=I>II. Subarticular tubercles are not obvious. Finger bases are swollen and have tubercles at the base. Two oval metacarpal tubercles are present, with the inner metacarpal tubercle being the larger of the two. Hind limbs are somewhat more robust and shorter. Left and right calcaneal parts overlap. Toes are slender and lack subarticular tubercles. The inner metatarsal tubercle is oval and the outer metatarsal tubercle is flattened. Toes lack membranous edges and only a slight rudiment of webbing is present at the base of the toes. Toe tips are dilated into a ball shape. Relative toe length is IV>III>V>II>I (Mo et al. 2010).

Skin is granulated with slight folds present and many tubercles. Small tubercles are scattered over the dorsally flattened head. An interocular fold forms a small triangular mark together with the posterior part of the upper eyelids. The upper eyelid has two or three fine transverse folds in the middle. A distinct temporal fold is present, more slender at the anterior and wider where it bends downward. Upper and lower lips are smooth. Small granules are present between the eye and tympanum. An X-shaped fold is present mid-dorsally. Faint longitudinal folds are present on the dorsolateral sides. Dorsal sides of thighs have three or four large tubercles. Dorsal sides of tibias have four or five large tubercles present in the dark crossbars. The belly is smooth. Thoracic sides have two small, round white glands. Ventral sides of thighs bear tubercles. Femoral glands are oval-shaped and distinct, located at the midpoint of the posterior sides of the thighs. Tubercles are more numerous and larger around the vent (Mo et al. 2010).

Adult males are smaller than adult females. Males have oblong nuptial pads with black spines on the inner dorsal sides of the base of the first finger and the palm, and smaller oval nuptial pads (also with black spines) are present on the inner dorsal sides of the base of the second finger. A single internal subgular vocal sac is present (Mo et al. 2010).

Coloration: In life, the dorsum is dark brown or yellow brown with dark bars or spots. A dark interorbital bar is present, as well as a dark X-shaped marking mid-dorsally. Some smaller “X” bars may be present between the interorbital bar and mid-dorsal X marking. Irregular black spots are present on the sides of the body. Bars are usually accompanied by folds and tubercles; in particular enlarged tubercles are scattered on the limbs' dorsal transverse bars, distinguishing Megophrys tuberogranulatus from other species. Scarlet marks are very noticeable in the groin area and sides of the thigh (Mo et al. 2010).

Similar species: M. tuberogranulatus can be distinguished from both Xenophrys kuatunensis and X. minor by having granulated dorsal skin with tubercles forming a linear pattern along folds; black transverse stripes on the dorsal side of thighs having large tubercles; scattered granules between large tubercles; and distinct tubercles along the underside of the digits. M. tuberogranulatus can be further distinguished from X. kuatunensis by its larger body size (37.2 +/2.2 mm SVL), longer hind limbs, and overlapping of the left and right calcaneal parts. M. tuberogranulatus can be further distinguished from X. minor by its large inner metacarpal tubercles and having the width of the upper eyelid greater than the interorbital distance. M. tuberogranulatus can be distinguished from X. palpebralespinosa, which also has granulated skin, by having numerous large granules on the upper eyelid with some extending outward, and well-developed membranous edges and webbing at the base of the toes (Mo et al. 2010). M. tuberogranulatus has not yet been formally compared to another recently described species from Tianpingshan Mountain at 1300 m asl with a similarly described call, M. sangzhiensis, but examination of the descriptions and photographs/drawings in the two papers (one a translated version) reveals that M. tuberogranulatus appears to have a smaller adult male body size (33.2-39.6 mm SVL vs. 54.7 mm SVL for M. sangzhiensis) and scarlet coloration confined to the anterior and posterior surfaces of thighs (vs. the entire ventral surface of the thighs being scarlet in M. sangzhiensis) (Mo et al. 2010; Jiang et al. 2008).

Distribution and Habitat

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: China

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Endemic to China, known only from the Wuling Mountain area. Collected at the Tianpingshan Mountain of Badagongshan Nature Reserve and Simenyan Mountain of Tianzishan Mountain Nature Reserve in Sangszhi County, northwest part of Hunan Province, China. Found in the scrub and frost region at 1,076-1,130 m asl, in moist or wet hiding spots under rocks and brush beside mountain streams (Mo et al. 2010).

Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
Males call between June and August, with the call sounding like “jia, jia, jia” (Mo et al. 2010).

Trends and Threats
This is a newly described species and its population status is unknown.

Species authority: Mo et al. (2010).

Etymology: The specific epithet tuberogranulatus refers to the granulated skin covered with tubercles, with enlarged tubercles on the dorsal sides of the thigh and tibia (Mo et al. 2010).


Jiang, J.-p., Ye, C.-y., and Fei, L. (2008). ''A new horn toad Megophrys sangzhiensis from Hunan, China (Amphibia,Anura).'' , 29(2), 219-222.

Mo, X., Shen, Y., Li, H., and Wu, X. (2010). ''A new species of Megophrys (Amphibia: Anura: Megophryidae) from the northwestern Hunan Province, China.'' Current Zoology, 56, 432-436.

Originally submitted by: Charlie Ramos (first posted 2010-07-01)
Edited by: Kellie Whittaker (2012-01-10)

Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2012 Boulenophrys tuberogranulatus <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Jun 17, 2024.

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Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2024. <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 17 Jun 2024.

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