This species is known from one threat-defined location of La Joya and surrounding areas in central-western Veracruz, Mexico, at 1,200 m asl. Its extent of occurrence (EOO) and area of occupancy (AOO) is 72 km2.
Habitat and Ecology
The species lives in bromeliads in pine-oak and cloud forests. It breeds by direct development.
It was abundant in its tiny range, but severe habitat degradation has occurred and the species has not been as easy to find during recent attempts. Studies performed by Eduardo Pineda and his group at INECOL searched for this species on several occasions. They found 41 individuals with 400 person hours of field sampling. These individuals were found at 3 localities near the type locality, however some of these individuals have morphological differences which indicate they might represent different species. Due to ongoing decline in the extent and quality of habitat, the population is suspected to be decreasing.
All areas surrounding La Joya are highly disturbed by extensive deforestation (from logging, urbanization and agriculture, including the use of slash and burn methods (P. Arias-Caballero pers. comm. August 2015) and mining). Between 2003 and 2004 the area of forest habitat available for this species was halved due to the expansion of mining activities; the remaining available habitat was only about 15 ha in 2004.
This species is not known from any protected areas, however, it is protected by Mexican law under the "Special Protection" category (Pr).
Maintenance and protection of the La Joya forest is urgently needed.
Red List Status
Critically Endangered (CR)
Listed as Critically Endangered because its extent of occurrence (EOO) is 72 km², all individuals are known from one threat-defined location, and there is a continuing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat at La Joya.
There is continuing uncertainty as to the taxonomic status of this form (D. Wake and G. Parra-Olea pers. comm.).
IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group 2016. Chiropterotriton lavae. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T59226A53978402. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-1.RLTS.T59226A53978402.en