This species is known from the eastern slope of the isolated mountain range of the Serrania de Sira (Cerros del Sira), Huánuco Region, in the upper Amazon basin of eastern central Peru. It is only known from the type locality, but the precise location is not certain, and the approximate elevation of known records is 2,400 m Asl.
Habitat and Ecology
This species is restricted to an isolated, and mostly inaccessible, mountain ridge in the upper Amazon basin, where the habitat is generally montane and premontane tropical forest. This is a terrestrial species that is presumed to breed in streams, and which is probably intolerant of habitat modification.
There is very little information available on its population status and trend, and it was only described from two specimens. It appears to have last been recorded in 1988 as multiple surveys in the last 11 years have not recorded the species. Surveys at and near the type locality in 2006, 2007, and 2011 did not record the species (J. Brown pers. comm. 2017). During February 2015, systematic nocturnal surveys were performed on the northwestern slopes of the Sira: 1 h 30 min surveys with two observers at each 100 m elevation, between 800 and 1,500 m Asl; in March 2015, five observers conducted surveys on the same ridge for 4 h from 1,500–1,850 m Asl; in March 2016, two people searched for 2 h at the highest peak on the ridge, between 1,800 and 1,925 m Asl, and none of these surveys recorded the species (C. Beirne pers. comm. May 2016). Two nights of surveying at the type locality also did not record the species in September 2016 (A. Whitworth pers. comm. April 2017). The type locality in 2013 and 2014 was also surveyed, but the species was not recorded there (G. Chavez pers. comm. April 2017).
There is little human disturbance of this very isolated area and, while collection for the pet trade was previously suspected to be threat to the species, there is no evidence of the species being found in trade. Chytridiomycosis was also listed as a potential future threat, but because the species is known only from two specimens, it is not known whether this disease affected the species prior to or since the last assessment.
Illegal logging, coca plantations, cattle farming, subsistence farming, and illegal mining have been documented as taking place in the Sira region and there are concerns that these are also occurring within the boundaries of the Reserva Comunal El Sira. During 2015, the Peruvian government conducted several raids against illegal gold mining operations in the El Sira Communal Reserve. Although there is a series of mining camps, the level of deforestation due to this activity is still minimal. Deforestation due to agricultural activities, however is growing in the buffer zone of the reserve (Finer and Novoa 2016), and some disturbances, principally logging and illegal coca plantations, are encroaching up to 800–900 m Asl (C. Beirne pers. comm. May 2016).
In addition, due to their limited geographical range, this species is expected to show limited climatic adaptability (Lötters 2007).
This species is found within the El Sira Communal Reserve. It is listed as Data Deficient (DD) in Peru according to the Categorization in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna (Decreto Supremo Nº004-2014-MINAGRI).
More information is needed on this species' distribution, population status, natural history, and threats. Further survey work at the type locality and surrounding areas is necessary to determine whether the species is still extant.
Red List Status
Data Deficient (DD)
Listed as Data Deficient in view of continuing uncertainties as to its type locality, the lack records despite many surveys in the area, and whether any threats may be affecting it.
IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group 2017. Atelopus siranus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T54552A89196563. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2017-2.RLTS.T54552A89196563.en .Downloaded on 23 January 2019