This species ranges very widely in eastern and southern Africa from northern Tanzania south to eastern South Africa, west to Namibia and Angola. There is an isolated record from Isiolo in Kenya, northeast of mount Kenya. Due to taxonomic uncertainties, the northern limits of the distribution are unclear. The species might extend even as far as Ethiopia and South Sudan. Records of Phrynobatrachus parvulus from Uganda (Kibale Forest (Vonesh 2001), Bwindi Impenetrable Forest (Drewes and Vindum 1994)), and Kampala might refer to this species (M. Pickersgill pers. comm.).
Habitat and Ecology
It lives in open and wooded savannah, less frequently grassland. It survives in agricultural land. It breeds in permanent, semi-permanent and temporary waters, including marshes, vleis and ponds, slow-flowing streams, the edges of small pans and shallow stagnant water amongst emergent vegetation.
It is a widespread and very common species that is found in huge numbers at breeding aggregations.
It is an adaptable species that is not facing any significant threats.
It occurs in many protected areas. Further taxonomic research is needed to clarify the identity of this taxon.
Red List Status
Least Concern (LC)
Listed as Least Concern in view of its very wide distribution, its tolerance of a broad range of habitats and its presumed large population.
The taxonomic status of this species in relation to Phrynobatrachus parvulus and P. ukingensis requires clarification (Poynton and Broadley 1985b). It is likely to represent more than one species based on molecular evidence (S. Loader pers. comm. Nov 2012). Zimkus et al. (2010) noted that nominal Phrynobatrachus mababiensis covers two distantly related species.
IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group 2014. Phrynobatrachus mababiensis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2014: e.T58124A3065552. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2014-3.RLTS.T58124A3065552.en .Downloaded on 17 January 2019