This species is known only from Mindoro Island, in the Philippines, at elevations of 100–1,650 m asl. It occurs in high elevation montane or mid-montane forests on large mountains and is known with certainty from the two largest massifs of Mount Halcon (type locality) and Mount Baco (Gonzales et al. 2000). Its extent of occurrence (EOO) is 1,593 km2 and it is considered to occur at two threat-defined locations.
Habitat and Ecology
This species inhabits arboreal microhabitats in montane and lowland forests. It breeds by direct development and deposits its eggs in humus in tree ferns and Pandanus and Freycenetia leaf axils.
It is common in suitable forest habitat, and also survives in small numbers in adjacent disturbed forested areas. Due to ongoing decline in the extent and quality of habitat, the population is suspected to be decreasing.
The major threat is habitat loss due to shifting, slash-and-burn agriculture and small-scale wood collection by local settlements. Commercial logging took place across the lowlands of Mindoro Island, but this took place over 50 years ago and has now ceased; however secondary forests are still being cleared, albeit at a smaller scale, for the planting of timber plantations through the Integrated Forest Management Agreement (Philippines Red List Assessment Workshop May 2017).
Mindoro Island Biodiversity Conservation Foundation is active on the island and is working to protect critical habitat (Philippines Red List Assessment Workshop May 2017). Depending on the identity of uncertain records, the species may occur in the Mount Calavite Wildlife Sanctuary and Iglit-Baco Natural Park.
There is clearly a need for improved protection of forest habitat on Mindoro.
More information is needed on this species' distribution, population status, ecology, and threats.
Red List Status
Listed as Endangered because its extent of occurrence (EOO) is 1,593 km2, it occurs in fewer than five threat-defined locations, and there is continuing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat on Mindoro in the Philippines.
This is the only Philautus species known on Mindoro Island, but additional records of Philautus-like specimens were made during surveys at Mount Calavite, Mount Halcon, Mount Baco, Abra de Ilog, Sablayan, and Blue Mountain between 2005-2017; these are tentatively assigned to this species but require analysis and confirmation of their identity as they may represent undescribed species (Philippines Red List Assessment Workshop May 2017).
IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group 2018. Philautus schmackeri. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2018: e.T26459A58475542. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2018-1.RLTS.T26459A58475542.en .Downloaded on 19 January 2019