This species occurs throughout northeast India and Bangladesh, it is marginal in Nepal, and possibly occurs in Bhutan (although this requires confirmation). It is considered here to be present in western Yunnan, China. It also occurs throughout most of mainland southeast Asia, including islands large (e.g. Phuket (Frith 1977) and Singapore (Lim and Lim 1992, Ming 2000)) and small (e.g. vegetated rocks off Tioman and Redang), and is widespread (and introduced) throughout the Philippines, and is present in Borneo, Mentawai, Sumatra, Java, Sulawesi, Bali, Lombok, Natuna Islands, Anambas Islands, Sumbawa, Sumba, Flores, Timor and is introduced to Papua (not mapped here). It also is found in China. It is introduced to Japan and is found in Okinawajima, Tonakijima, Kurimajima, Miyakojima, Iejima, Iheyajima, Izenajima, Sesokojima and Yabuchijima. It is found up to 1,500 m asl.
Habitat and Ecology
It is a very adaptable opportunist and commensal, occurring from beach vegetation through all manner of human habitats (such as agricultural areas, ditches, artificial ponds and lakes, gardens, even in houses) and natural edge habitats to closed primary forest. It appears to be dependent on human activities to create suitable habitats. There might be separation among habitat axes among the component species in the leucomystax complex.
It is abundant and common throughout its range.
It is not subjected to any significant degree of disturbance, which could threaten its survival. Presumably heavy application of pesticides around houses might pose threats to local subpopulations. It is sometimes found in the international pet trade but at levels that do not currently constitute a major threat.
The main conservation issue is the cryptic diversity within the species complex as some of the hidden taxa might be of conservation concern, but reliable recognition needs to be established before conservation strategies can be formulated.
Red List Status
Least Concern (LC)
Listed as Least Concern in view of its wide distribution, tolerance of a broad range of habitats, presumed large population, and because it is unlikely to be declining fast enough to qualify for listing in a more threatened category.
Polypedates leucomystax represents a complex of poorly known cryptic species. Until a comprehensive taxonomic revision of the Polypedates leucomystax complex is undertaken, we follow Orlov et al. (2001) in restricting Polypedates megacephalus to populations north of the Red River of Viet Nam, and we consider populations south of the Red River, including those western Yunnan (China) to refer to P. leucomystax (with the exception of a few recent records from northeastern India).
Diesmos, A.C., Alcala, A., Brown, R., Afuang, L.E., Gee, G., Sukumaran, J., Yaakob, N., Ming, L., Chuaynkern, Y., Thirakhupt, K., Das, I., Iskandar, D., Mumpuni, Inger, R.F., Stuebing, R., Yambun, P. & Lakim, M. 2004. Polypedates leucomystax. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2004: e.T58953A86477485. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2004.RLTS.T58953A11861409.en