AmphibiaWeb - Hyloscirtus colymba


(Translations may not be accurate.)

Hyloscirtus colymba (Dunn, 1931)
family: Hylidae
subfamily: Hylinae
genus: Hyloscirtus
Hyloscirtus colymba
© 2013 Don Filipiak (1 of 6)

sound file   hear Fonozoo call

Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN Red List Status Account Endangered (EN)
National Status None
Regional Status None
conservation needs Access Conservation Needs Assessment Report .


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Coloration is pale-green to pale-brown above, and bluish-green on the venter, with a creamy line on the edge of the upper eyelid, the supratympanic fold, and the canthus (Duellman 1970). This species can immediately be distinguished from other Middle American hylids by the presence of an oval-shaped mental gland on the chin. The iris is pale brown, bones appear greenish through the skin, and a yellow anal stripe runs transversely. The skin is smooth except for weak granulation on the ventral thighs and belly.

The head is flat on top, the snout appears acutely rounded in dorsal outline and bluntly rounded in lateral profile, and the canthus is angular. The tympanum is approximately half the size of the eye, and a dermal fold arches from the eye, over the tympanum, to a point above the arm's insertion. The fingers are 1/3 webbed and bear small discs, while the toes are about 4/5 webbed and also bear small discs. Adult male snout-vent length begins around 31.9 mm and reaches a maximum of 37.0 mm, whereas females range from 36.7 to 43.3 mm (all above descriptions based on Duellman 1970).

The tadpole is ovoid, with a relatively shallow dorsal fin that does not extend onto the body. A large, ventral mouth is present, completely bordered by two rows of oral papillae, with bluntly serrated beaks, and six upper and nine lower rows of teeth (with some variation). The spiracle is sinstral, at a point midlength and midline along the body, and the anal tube is dextral (all tadpole morphology from Duellman 1970).

The mating call has been described as a "series of short, high pitched, cricket-like chirps," where the notes are produced in rapid succession (Duellman 1970).

Distribution and Habitat

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

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View distribution map in BerkeleyMapper.
amphibiandisease logo View Bd and Bsal data (9 records).
Hyla colymba is found on the Caribbean slopes of western Panama and Costa Rica, on the Pacific slopes of eastern Panama and Ecuador, and presumably in Colombia (Duellman 1970). It occupies an elevational range between 600 and 1400 m, what has been described as the Subtropical Rainforest Lifezone (Holdridge 1967). Typical habitat lies in close proximity to streams of humid, lower montane forest or cloud forest, and tadpoles are commonly found within quiet of small rocky streams (Duellman 1970).

Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
Few life history observations have been reported for H. colymba. It has been noted that males are extremely wary, calling and remaining in retreat under large boulders, and ceasing calls at any slight disturbance (Duellman 1970).

Trends and Threats
No population records have been obtained for H. colymba, and thus its conservation status, and any potential threats, remain unknown.

Hyla alvaradoi is synonymous with H. colymba; see Duellman (1970) for remarks.

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


Duellman, W.E. (1970). The Hylid Frogs of Middle America. Monograph of the Museum of Natural History, University of Kansas.

Holdridge, L. R. (1967). Life Zone Ecology. Tropical Science Center, San Jose, Costa Rica.

Originally submitted by: Sean Schoville (first posted 2000-02-28)
Description by: Michelle S. Koo (updated 2021-03-18)
Comments by: Michelle S. Koo (updated 2021-03-18)

Edited by: Meredith J. Mahoney (2021-03-18)

Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2021 Hyloscirtus colymba <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Jul 15, 2024.

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Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2024. <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 15 Jul 2024.

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