This species is known only from Mount Kitumbeine, an extinct volcano in northern Tanzania, from 2,180-2,800 m asl. Its range is likely to be very restricted, since most other sites where it could occur have already been surveyed without success. However, it is possible that it might be found on the poorly surveyed peaks of Monduli, Longido and Gelai.
Habitat and Ecology
It has been found along semi-permanent and seasonal streams, and around temporary pools in montane Juniperus forest, and tussock montane grassland. It is able to survive in heavily disturbed forest. It breeds in open water by larval development (K. Howell pers. comm. June 2012). Males have been heard calling in April.
It is apparently common in its small range and was seen as recently as 2012 (K. Howell pers. comm. June 2012). Its population is not considered to be severely fragmented.
The habitats on Mount Kitumbeine are threatened by livestock grazing and fire. Dry spells could mean that the Masai may use the area occupied by this species for their livestock grazing, increasing the threat level to this species (J. Vonesh, C. Msuya and K. Howell pers. comm. June 2012). Small-holder agriculture activities have been recorded at lower elevations; however, they do not impact habitats at the elevations where this species is found (C. Msuya pers. comm. June 2012).
It occurs in the Kitumbeine Forest Reserve; however, it requires improved management and enforcement (C. Msuya and K. Howell pers. comm. June 2012). More information is needed on this species' distribution, population status and natural history.
Red List Status
Listed as Vulnerable because it is known from only a single threat-defined location based on the possibility of livestock grazing moving into the area occupied by this species in Mount Kitumbeine in dry years.
IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group 2013. Strongylopus kitumbeine. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2013: e.T58769A17181622. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2013-2.RLTS.T58769A17181622.en .Downloaded on 20 January 2019