This species is known only from the vicinity of the type locality: ca 10 km east of Conchamarca, Conchamarca District, Ambo Province, Huánuco Region, central Peru, between 3,420 and 3,430 m asl. It likely has a very restricted distribution (E. Lehr pers. comm. April 2017).
Habitat and Ecology
It is terrestrial and can be found in Polylepis forest ("Queñoales") and high elevation shrubland ("Matorral Húmedo"). The species needs moist areas to survive, and has not been found in degraded habitats. The type series was collected at midday from slightly disturbed grasslands with a few bushes near a canal and from under rocks covered by a large layer of moss in a Polylepis-forest (Lehr 2001). It is presumed to breed by direct development (E. Lehr pers. comm. April 2017).
It is assumed to be rare (E. Lehr pers. comm. April 2017). During 1999 surveys in Huánuco, 12 individuals were observed over three person-days, while two individuals were found over one person-day in 2003 (von May et al. 2008). Although field work was carried out also in other localities at high and moderate elevations in the eastern Andes of central Peru, this species was only found at the type locality and close vicinities (Lehr 2001). There have not been surveys for this species since 2003 (E. Lehr pers. comm. December 2017).
The Polylepis forests have been reduced drastically by human activities over the years, primarily due to potato farming and cattle ranching (E. Lehr pers. comm. April 2017). Threats to this species in shrubland habitats is unknown.
It is not currently known from any protected areas. It is listed as Critically Endangered (CR) in Peru according to the Categorization in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna (Decreto Supremo Nº004-2014-MINAGRI).
Immediate protection and maintenance of the remaining habitat is necessary (E. Lehr pers. comm. April 2017).
More information is needed on this species' distribution, population status, ecology, and threats. There is a need for monitoring the population status of this species given the major threat of habitat loss due to agriculture and livestock.
Red List Status
Critically Endangered (CR)
Listed as Critically Endangered because its estimated extent of occurrence is 10 km2, all individuals are in a single threat-define location, and there is continuing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat in the Cordillera Oriental in central Peru.
IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group 2018. Phrynopus heimorum. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2018: e.T57210A89211204. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2018-1.RLTS.T57210A89211204.en .Downloaded on 19 January 2019