Chile Mountains False Toad
© 2013 Bert Willaert (1 of 10)
The larvae have a sinistral spiracle facing backwards and slightly up. When viewed from the side, the body is elliptical-shaped. The snout tip is truncate, whereas the tail tip is smoothed out. The mouth is located on the underside and is about 2/3 of the maximum body width. There are two large elliptical glands behind the eyes, as well as several smaller round glands going down the back (Diaz et al. 1983).
This species has a unique orange-spotted coloration in life that easily distinguishes it from any other frog species. In preservative, other Telmatobufo species have a few coloration differences that distinguish it from T. venustus. The back is brown in T. bullocki and gray in T. australis. The underside is light gray in T. australis with uneven dark spots, and the underside is spotted brown in T. bullocki. The outer edge of the fifth toe in T. venustus is wider in length than in T. bullocki, and lacks glands in that area. The toe tips are rounded in T. venustus versus pointed in T. bullocki and T. australis (Formas and Veloso 1982).
In life, it is black with orange spotting on the head, back, paratoids, and limbs. There are two orange stripes behind the paratoids that run down both sides of the midline of the body. There is some yellow spotting on the sides of the body, as well as the backside of the lower thighs, the backside of the feet, and the inner forearm. The fingertips and toe tips are yellowish-orange. In preservative, adult specimens are white, and juvenile specimens are black with uneven white spots (Formas and Veloso 1982).
In life, the larvae are dark with orange spots on the head and back. In formalin, the coloration fades to dark brown (Diaz et al. 1983).
Besides the aforementioned color differences between the adult and juvenile specimens in preservative, no other information is available on variation within the species (Formas and Veloso 1982).
Distribution and Habitat
Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
Trends and Threats
Possible reasons for amphibian decline
General habitat alteration and loss
This species was originally ascribed to the genus Bufo in 1899 by Philippi. In 1972, it was placed in the genus Aruncus by Donoso-Barros. Lynch placed this species in the genus Telmatobufo in 1978. Formas and Veloso wrote a detailed taxonomical description of this species in 1982 and using osteological analysis, confirmed its placement in the Telmatobufo genus (Formas and Veloso 1982).
The first description of the larvae was in 1983, which was 84 years after the original species description (Fenolio et al. 2011).
Diaz, N., Sallaberry, M., Nuñez, H. (1983). ''The Tadpole of Telmatobufo venustus (Anura: Leptodactylidae) With a Consideration of Generic Relationships.'' Herpetologica, 39(2), 111-113.
Fenolio, D. B., Charrier, A., Levy, M. G., Fabry, M. O., Tirado, M. S., Crump, M. L., Lamar, W. W., Calderón, P. (2011). ''A Review of the Chile Mountains False Toad, Telmatobufo venustus (Amphibia: Anura: Calyptocephalellidae), with Comments on its Conservation Status.'' Herpetological Review, 42(4), 514-519.
Formas, J. R., Veloso, A. (1982). ''Taxonomy of Bufo venustus Philippi, 1899 (Anura: Leptodactylidae) from Central Chile.'' Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington, 95(4), 688-693.
Written by Brett Butler (bbutler7 AT berkeley.edu), University of California, Berkeley
First submitted 2015-08-11
Edited by Gordon Lau (2015-08-18)
Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2015 Telmatobufo venustus: Chile Mountains False Toad <http://amphibiaweb.org/species/2731> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Dec 11, 2019.
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Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2019. <http://amphibiaweb.org> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 11 Dec 2019.
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