This species is widely distributed in Southeast Asia, beginning in the montane region of southern Viet Nam and adjacent eastern Cambodia, running northward through Lao PDR to adjacent northeastern Thailand, then passing southwards from northern Myanmar and the low mountains of northwestern Thailand to the northern edge of the Isthmus of Kra in peninsular Thailand and Myanmar (Inger and Stuart 2010). It likely occurs in Yunnan province, China, although there is a lack of records due to taxonomic confusion of species in the province (B. Stuart pers. comm. 2015). In addition, the species may have a disjunct distribution, with one series of L. limborgi collected in peninsular Malaysia (Inger and Stuart 2010).
Habitat and Ecology
It is found in evergreen and deciduous forests, including karst areas in Southeast Asia, from lowlands to montane regions c. 220–1,010 m Asl (Duckworth et al. 1999, Bain et al. 2007, J. Rowley pers. comm. 2015). It usually occurs in leaf litter, mud burrows and rocky rubble along a variety of stream beds (Duckworth et al. 1999, Bain et al. 2007, J. Rowley pers. comm. 2015). Streams at or near localities for the species range from dry (Duckworth et al. 1999, J. Rowley pers. comm. 2015), to low-flow (Bain et al. 2007, J. Rowley pers. comm. 2015), or flooded, and may be sandy or rocky, and flow over flat or steep terrain (J. Rowley pers. comm. 2015). Occasional sightings of the species in leaf litter, mud and puddles on logging roads in disturbed forests suggest some tolerance to habitat disturbance (Bain et al. 2007, J. Rowley pers. comm. 2015).
The species has endotrophic (free-living but non-feeding) larvae and nidicolous development (eggs oviposited terrestrially in nests) (Rowley and Altig 2012). Typically, a nest comprises a terrain depression covered by leaf litter (Rowley and Altig 2012). The attendant male may or may not be present in the nest, which can contain clutches of up to 15 eggs or tadpoles (Rowley and Altig 2012). Calling males can be present regardless of the presence of or developmental stage of their progeny (Rowley and Altig 2012).
The abundance and population size of this species are unknown. However, its population is suspected to be decreasing due to ongoing habitat loss, but it is not thought to be severely fragmented.
Habitat loss is likely the most immediate threat to the species, given its ecological needs for leaf litter and thus forests. Currently known contributors to habitat loss for the species include commercial logging, agricultural and livestock encroachment, oil palm production (Sodhi et al. 2010) and development associated with hydroelectric dams (Grimsditch 2012).
Increasingly, investigations of Southeast Asian frogs have revealed that species with wide regional distribution may comprise several species, each with a limited geographic range (Inger and Stuart 2010). This was suggested as a possible explanation for the wide distribution of L. limborgi given the species’ considerable genetic structure and morphological variation in webbing (Inger and Stuart 2010). If true, the conservation status of the species will require reassessment and implications for conservation actions may alter significantly as a result. Thus, further genetic research on the species is needed. In addition, further research is needed on the species' population size, distribution and trends, its life history and ecology, possible harvesting and trade and details of local threats.
Red List Status
Least Concern (LC)
Listed as Least Concern in view of its wide distribution across Southeast Asia, tolerance of a degree of habitat modification, and its presumed large population. However, localized threats may require site-specific conservation action.
This species was removed from the synonymy of Limnonectes hascheanus by Dubois (1986), where it had been placed by Smith (1929).
IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group 2017. Limnonectes limborgi. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T58349A63899945. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2017-2.RLTS.T58349A63899945.en .Downloaded on 19 January 2019