This species is known from Fusagasuga, between Alto de San Miguel and Aguadita, on the western flank of the eastern Andes, Cundinamarca Department, Colombia, between 2,410–2,469 m Asl. Its EOO is 81 km2.
Habitat and Ecology
This species lives on the forest floor and along streams in cloud forest; it is not found outside old-growth forest. Its breeding habits are still not documented, but it is assumed that breeding and larval development take place in streams.
It is rare, was last seen in 1979 and is known from only six individuals. Four expeditions since 1995 have failed to turn up any individuals of this species. Its range has been completely deforested, except for one private tract of land 11 ha in size. In 2016, two expeditions were conducted but were not successful in recording the species and did not cover the forest track within the private protected area (M. Anganoy-Criollo pers. comm. February 2017). The first of these expeditions involved 24 hours per person searching, and the second involved 72 hours per person searching (M. Anganoy-Criollo pers. comm. March 2017).
Deforestation for the planting of crops and cattle grazing is the primary threat to this species. Additionally, cattle grazing and pig farms contribute to the contamination of the water, an important element for reproduction of similar species.
This species has not been recorded in any protected areas.
Surveys are urgently needed to determine whether or not this species still persists in the wild, especially on forest patches near the type locality. Research in population trends and ecology are also recommended for the species.
Red List Status
Critically Endangered (CR)
Listed as Critically Endangered because its extent of occurrence (EOO) is 81 km2, all individuals are in a single location, and there is continuing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat, and in the number of mature individuals. It is tagged as Possibly Extinct as it has not been seen since 1979, despite multiple surveys.
IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group 2017. Hyloxalus ruizi. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T55143A85890887. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2017-2.RLTS.T55143A85890887.en .Downloaded on 21 January 2019