This species is known only from the northwestern slope of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, in the department of Magdalena, northern Colombia, at 1,500–3,800 m asl (Rueda-Solano and Vargas-Salinas 2010, Bayly et al. 2012, L.A. Rueda-Solano and F. Vargas-Salinas pers. comm. 2016). Its EOO is 509 km2 and it occurs in two threat-defined locations.
Habitat and Ecology
This species inhabits moist forests and rocky high mountain habitats (subpáramo and páramo) (Rueda-Solano and Vargas-Salinas 2010). Mainly nocturnal, this species is associated with streams and the vegetation along them, and its usually found jumping and hiding around rocks and logs during the day (Rueda-Solano and Vargas-Salinas 2010). It can also be found in areas away from creeks (L.A. Rueda-Solano pers. comm. 2016). It is more abundant and easy to record in subpáramo and páramo habitats than in forest (L.A. Rueda-Solano and F. Vargas-Salinas pers. comm. 2016). It breeds by direct development.
It is a common species in subpáramo and páramo habitats and uncommon in other habitats. Due to ongoing decline in the quality and extent of its habitat, the population is suspected to be decreasing.
The major threat to this species is the loss and degradation of forest, páramo and riparian habitats primarily due to cultivation of crops through slash and burn practice and cattle raising (A. Quevedo, L.A. Rueda-Solano and F. Vargas-Salinas pers. comm. 2016).
Its range includes Parque Nacional Natural Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta and ProAves El Dorado Nature Reserve. No conservation actions are currently in place for this species.
Management of habitat both inside and outside of protected areas should minimize the impact of cattle and shifting agriculture.
Studies on its population size, distribution and trends, life history and ecology, and threats are needed.
Red List Status
Listed as Endangered because its extent of occurrence (EOO) is 509 km2, all individuals are in two locations, and there is continuing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat on the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta.
IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group 2017. Pristimantis ruthveni. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T56939A85883275. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2017-3.RLTS.T56939A85883275.en .Downloaded on 20 February 2019