AmphibiaWeb - Bombina orientalis


(Translations may not be accurate.)

Bombina orientalis (Boulenger, 1890)
Oriental Fire-Bellied Toad
family: Bombinatoridae
genus: Bombina

© 2009 Pierre Fidenci (1 of 37)

AmphibiaChina 中国两栖类.

Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN Red List Status Account Least Concern (LC)
National Status None
Regional Status None
Access Conservation Needs Assessment Report .



View distribution map in BerkeleyMapper.
View Bd and Bsal data (58 records).

Tympanic membrane absent. Transversal processes of the vertebra sacralis notably widened. Pupil of the eye triangular. No male resonators. Skin tuberculate. Dorsal skin with very high, quite acute tubercles. The tubercles are the highest among the three species of Bombina in the former USSR. The tops of the tubercles are sometimes so rough that they feel like short needles. Belly is smooth, with small tubercles present only near the cloaca. Dorsal surface brown gray to gray-greenish or bright green with dark spots. Belly red or red-orange to yellow with dark spots. Bright spots fused forming an irregular pattern. The bright coloration exceeds the dark coloration in area on the belly. The male differs from the female by having nuptial pads on the first and second fingers.

Distribution and Habitat

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: China, Korea, Democratic People's Republic of, Korea, Republic of, Russian Federation


View distribution map in BerkeleyMapper.
View Bd and Bsal data (58 records).
Bombina orientalis inhabits Northeastern China (provinces of Anhui, Shandong, Hebei, Liaoning, Jilin and Heilongjiang), Korea, Southern Japan (Tsushima and Kiushiu islands), and the Khabarovsk and Primorye regions in Russia. Part of the range in the Lianoning Province, China, seems to be isolated from the other parts. The northernmost locality is Arsenievo Village, Nanai District, Khabarovsk Region in Russia (ca. 48o40'N, 137o12'E).

The species lives in various landscapes, as a rule, in mixed coniferous - broad-leaved forests. However, it often occurs in other habitats, including spruce, pine or leafed forests, open meadows, river valleys, swampy bushlands, etc. Bombina orientalis uses different types of bodies of water with stagnant (sometimes running) water: lakes, ponds, swamps, streams, springs, ditches, puddles etc. At the end of summer, the species can be found on land at distances up to few hundred meters from water.

Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
Bombina orientalis is one of the most common amphibians in the central part of the range, comprising a large proportion (to 29%) of their total number. The population density at breeding sites reaches 8.0 specimens per square meter. However, the toad becomes rarer northwards. In Khabarovsk Region, at the northern margin of its range, the toad is a rare species, known by only a few individuals.

The toad hibernates from late September - October to late April - May, on land: in rotten trees, heaps of stones, leaves, in groups of 1-6 individuals. Sometimes hibernation occurs in streams. Reproduction occurs in May - mid-August. The reproductive period is very long within each population because different females deposit eggs at a different time. The process of egg deposition is gradual: there are no peaks in spawning intensity. The male mating call resembles that of the Fire-Bellied Toad (Bombina bombina). Breeding pairs are formed randomly. Amplexus is pelvic. The clutch contains 38-257 eggs deposited in portions of 3-45 eggs. The interval between deposition of subsequent portions is 7-10 days. Probably, females are capable of depositing multiple clutches. Embryonic and larval development take about 2 months, and hatching takes place usually from early June to late July. Tadpoles complete metamorphosis usually by the end of August - late September. Maximum longevity is estimated as 20 years.

Adult diet consists of terrestrial invertebrates including worms, molluscs and insects. The proportion of aquatic invertebrates (Gastropoda, Notonectidae, Dytiscidae, etc.) varies among populations.

Some predatory birds and mammals are known as natural enemies of this species. The defensive posture of adult individuals is similar to that of the European Fire-Bellied Toad (B. bombina).

Larvae consume detritus, various algae, fungi, higher plants, protozoans and, in smaller amounts, Oligochaeta, Naiadomorpha, Rotatoria and Microcrustacea(Daphniidae, Sididae, Chydoridae, Ostracoda). The tadpole diet widens during ontogeny because of an increase in plant and animal diversity. Preying upon of terrestrial invertebrates (Acarina, Collembola) starts before the completion of metamorphosis while the toadlets still have a small tail rudiment.

Relation to Humans
This toad is an opportunistic species; it is common in agricultural landscapes and often occurs in villages.


Bannikov, A. G., Darevsky, I. S. and Rustamov, A. K. (1971). Zemnovodnye i Presmykayushchienya SSSR [Amphibians and Reptiles of the USSR]. Izdatelistvo Misl, Moscow.

Bannikov, A. G., Darevsky, I. S., Ishchenko, V. G., Rustamov, A. K., and Szczerbak, N. N. (1977). Opredelitel Zemnovodnykh i Presmykayushchikhsya Fauny SSSR [Guide to Amphibians and Reptiles of the USSR Fauna]. Prosveshchenie, Moscow.

Fei, L. (1999). Atlas of Amphibians of China. Henan Publishing House of Science and Technology, Zhengzhou.

Kuzmin, S. L. (1995). Die Amphibien Russlands und angrenzender Gebiete. Westarp Wissenschaften, Magdeburg.

Kuzmin, S. L. (1999). The Amphibians of the Former Soviet Union. Pensoft, Sofia-Moscow.

Nikolsky, A. M (1936). Fauna of Russia and Adjacent Countries: Amphibians (English translation of Nikolsky, 1918, Faune de la Russie et des Pays limitrophes. Amphibiens. Académie Russe des Sciences, Petrograd, USSR). Israel Program for Scientific Translations, Jerusalem.

Stejneger, L. H. (1907). Herpetology of Japan and Adjacent Territory, United States National Museum Bulletin 58. Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D. C..

Terent'ev, P. V. and Chernov, S. A (1965). Key to Amphibians and Reptiles [of the USSR]. Israel Program for Scientific Translations, Jerusalem.

Won, H.-K. (1971). Choson Ryangso Pyachyungryuchji [Amphibian and Reptilian Fauna of Korea]. Korean Academy of Sciences, Pyongyang.

Ye, C., Fei, L., and Hu, S. Q. (1993). Rare and Economic Amphibians of China. Sichuan Publishing House of Science and Technology, Chengdu.

Zhao, E. and Adler, K. (1993). Herpetology of China. Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles, Oxford, Ohio.

Zhao, E. and Zhao, H. (1994). Chinese Herpetological Literature: Catalogue and Indices. Chengdu University of Science and Technology, Chengdu.

Originally submitted by: Sergius L. Kuzmin (first posted 1999-09-30)
Edited by: Kellie Whittaker, Michelle S. Koo (2023-10-15)

Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2023 Bombina orientalis: Oriental Fire-Bellied Toad <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Apr 19, 2024.

Feedback or comments about this page.


Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2024. <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 19 Apr 2024.

AmphibiaWeb's policy on data use.