AmphibiaWeb - Leptodactylus caatingae


(Translations may not be accurate.)

Leptodactylus caatingae Heyer & Juncá, 2003
family: Leptodactylidae
subfamily: Leptodactylinae
genus: Leptodactylus
Species Description: Heyer, W. R., & F. A. Junca. 2003. Leptodactylus caatingae, a new species of frog from eastern Brazil (Amphibia: Anura: Leptodactylidae). Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington, 116:317-329.
Leptodactylus caatingae
© 2014 Thiago R. Carvalho (1 of 2)
Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN Red List Status Account Least Concern (LC)
National Status None
Regional Status None


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Morphologically, Leptodactylus caatingae differs very little from Leptodactylus latinasus and , but it is considered distinct because of significant differences in its advertising call (Heyer and Juncá 2003).

Generally, dorsal patterns include single or double dark chevrons, sometimes well defined and sometimes weakly defined. The back is also characterized by chaotically placed small to medium-sized dark markings, while a light, interrupted pin stripe is present in some specimens (Heyer and Juncá 2003).

Lip stripes vary from distinct to indiscernible (Heyer and Juncá 2003).

Most specimens have a distinct light stripe on the lower face of the posterior thigh, surrounded by irregular broad, dark outlines. Upper shanks have irregular dark transverse bands (Heyer and Juncá 2003).

There is a great deal of variation in belly patterns: specimens from one locality have either an almost uniform distribution of densely packed melanophores, a variegated pattern of melanophores, or groups of melanophores scattered across the belly. Specimens from other localities had a weakly variegated pattern of melanophores, a few scattered melanophores, or lack a belly pattern altogether (Heyer and Juncá 2003).

Dorsolateral folds may be present or absent (Heyer and Juncá 2003).

White tubercles can frequently be found on the legs and feet (Heyer and Juncá 2003).

Distribution and Habitat

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Brazil

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L. caatingae is known from eight localities in eastern Brazil. Seven of the localities are in Caatinga Morphoclimatic Domain, while the southernmost locality is in the Atlantic Morphoclimatic Domain. Specimens have been observed and collected in flooded forest areas. There are two species to which L. caatingae is nearly identical morphologically: L. latinasus and L. fragilis. However, L. fragilis lives only between southernmost Texas (U.S.A.) and north coastal Venezuela, while L. latinasus lives only in Argentina, Bolivia, Uruguay, and southwestern Brazil (Heyer and Juncá 2003).

Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
The advertisement call of L. caatingae distinguishes it from L. latinasus, which until recently was believed to be the same species. The human ear can perceive the difference between the calls, and analysis of waveforms clearly demonstrates the difference. The advertisement call of L. caatingae is pulsed and has a frequency of 940-1620 Hz, while the advertisement call of L. latinasus is not pulsed and has a higher frequency of 3000 - 3781 Hz. L. caatingae can be distinguished from its relative L. fragilis by the greater length of its call, about 0.19 seconds rather than about 0.07 (Heyer and Juncá 2003).

The life history of L. caatingae is not known (Heyer and Juncá 2003).

Trends and Threats
No threats to L. caatingae have been identified (Heyer and Juncá 2003).



Heyer, W. R. and Juncá, F. A. (2003). ''Leptodactylus caatingae, a new species of frog from eastern Brazil (Amphibia: Anura: Leptodactylidae).'' Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington, 116(2), 317-329.

Originally submitted by: Benjamin Fryer (first posted 2004-05-12)
Edited by: Tate Tunstall (2017-01-24)

Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2017 Leptodactylus caatingae <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Jun 13, 2024.

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Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2024. <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 13 Jun 2024.

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