AmphibiaWeb - Allophrynidae


(Translations may not be accurate.)


phylogeny icon

3 species in 1 genus

Commonly Called Tukeit Hill Frog, Resplendent Frog

Allophryne ruthveni
Allophryne ruthveni
Photo by Mauro Teixeira Jr.
(Click for family gallery)

A monotypic family whose position within "Neobatrachia" has been an enigma since its discovery by Gaige (1926). This species occurs north and south of the Amazon River and has been collected in Venezuela, Suriname, Guyana, French Guiana, and Brazil. Recent studies (see species account for Allophryne ruthveni) place it as sister to the Centrolenidae. Not much is known about this family's ecology, behavior, or development.

Written by AmphibiaWeb

Notable Family Characteristics

  • Found in shrubby, vegetated habitat associated with streams
  • Morphological characters for this family include: 1) eight presacral vertebrae; 2) ribs absent; 3) urostyle free; 4) pectoral girdle arciferal; 5) sternum cartilaginous and omosternum absent; 6) clavicle does not overlie scapula; 7) teeth absent; 8) intercalary cartilage between final and penultimate phalanx; 9) sartorious muscle separate and distinct; 10) pupil horizontal; 11) T-shaped terminal phalanges
  • Tadpoles are aquatic and Type IV
  • Some species are nocturnal
  • Distribution limited to Guyanan region of South America
Allophrynidae Richness map

Cartography Credit: Zoe Yoo, UC Berkeley
Range maps sources: AmphibiaWeb, UC Berkeley, and IUCN RedList

Relevant Reference

Austin, J. D., Lougheed, S. C., Tanner, K., Chek, A. A., Bogart, J. P., and Boag, P. T. (2002). ''A molecular perspective on the evolutionary affinities of an enigmatic neotropical frog, Allophryne ruthveni.'' Zoological Journal of the Linnaean Society, 134, 335-346.

Cannatella, David. 1996. Allophryne ruthveni. Version 01 January 1996. in The Tree of Life Web Project,

Genus Allophryne (3 species)
Allophryne relicta account no photos no sound/video
Allophryne resplendens account no photos no sound/video
Allophryne ruthveni account photos no sound/video

Citation: AmphibiaWeb: Information on amphibian biology and conservation. [web application]. Berkeley, California: AmphibiaWeb. Available: (Accessed:

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