Pseudoeurycea brunnata

Subgenus: Pseudoeurycea
family: Plethodontidae
subfamily: Hemidactyliinae

© 2016 David Wake (1 of 5)
Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN (Red List) Status Critically Endangered (CR)
Other International Status None
National Status None
Regional Status None

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Guatemala, Mexico



View distribution map using BerkeleyMapper.

From the IUCN Red List Species Account:


Range Description

This species is known from Volcán Tacaná (in extreme eastern Chiapas, Mexico), discontinuously eastwards as far as Volcán Chicabal (in south-western Guatemala), at 2,400-2,800m asl.

Habitat and Ecology

It inhabits pine-oak and upper cloud forest, where it is strictly terrestrial, and can tolerate only very limited habitat disturbance. It breeds by direct development and is not dependent upon water.


It was formerly extremely abundant, but has undergone extensive declines. Recent surveys (2005 and 2006) at Volcán Chicabal and at San Marcos, in Guatemala, have not revealed any specimens (Sean Rovito and Carlos Vásquez pers. comm. 2007), despite it once being one of the most abundant species at those same localities (collected many times in consistently large numbers). The declines in population do not seem to be linked to habitat modification, and are not a result of overcollection of specimens.

Population Trend


Major Threats

The decline in the population of this species is enigmatic, with further research needed to determine the cause. The species is additionally threatened by habitat loss due to clear-cutting of forest, urbanization, human settlement, and expanding agriculture (including livestock farming).

Conservation Actions

It has been previously recorded from the Volcán Chicabal Reserve in Guatemala, but was not found on a recent visit (Carlos Vásquez and Sean Rovito pers. comm. 2007). Habitat protection is an urgent priority. The species is in need of close population monitoring, and research is urgently needed into the enigmatic population decline. It is protected by Mexican law under the "Special Protection" category (Pr).

Red List Status

Critically Endangered (CR)


Listed as Critically Endangered because populations have declined by greater than 80% over the last 10 years, based on direct observation and ongoing habitat loss.


Acevedo, M., Wake, D., Vasquez, C. & Rovito, S. 2008. Pseudoeurycea brunnata. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T59372A11924519. .Downloaded on 20 February 2019


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