This species is known from Rwanda, Burundi and eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, but its extact distribution is poorly known. Its approximate elevation range is 1,467-2,000 m asl, with most records between 1,700-1,900 m asl. Its current known range represents an extent of occurrence of 24,458 km2.
Habitat and Ecology
It is a species of montane forest and, similar to its congeners, is presumed to breed by larval development in streams.
The type was collected in 1949 in Burundi by Laurent, but additional unpublished records from this time record the species from DRC, Rwanda and Uganda (D. Blackburn pers. comm. Oct 2015). Interestingly, the earliest record of this species was a misidentification by Nieden in 1911 from an uncertain locality in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (west of Lake Edward either in or west of Virunga National Park; D. Blackburn pers. comm. October 2015). Subsequently, after many years of no records, a photo of the species recorded it from Bwindi Forest, Uganda in 2009. Then a single specimen was collected in Bururi Forest Nature Reserve in Burundi 2012. In 2015, it was further recorded from Kahuzi-Biega National Park in DRC.
Little is known about the biology of this species. However, it is only known from montane forest habitats which are highly threatened by agricultural encroachment and logging throughout the region and are therefore inferred to be severe ongoing threats to this species.
It occurs in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in Uganda, Kahuzi-Biega National Park in DRC, and Bururi Forest Nature Reserve in Burundi, and based on Nieden's record it is likely to occur in Virunga National Park in DRC.
Ongoing and improved protection is required for the habitat and protected areas in which this species occurs.
Further research is needed on the distribution, population status, ecology, and threats to this species.
Red List Status
Near Threatened (NT)
Because its extent of occurrence (EOO) has been estimated as 24,458 km2, and there are ongoing and widespread threats to the extent and quality of its habitat, it is suspected to occur in fewer than 10 locations making this species close to qualifying for Vulnerable B1ab(iii). It has therefore been listed as Near Threatened.
IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group 2016. Cardioglossa cyaneospila. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T54398A18364387. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-1.RLTS.T54398A18364387.en .Downloaded on 22 January 2019