Cannatella’s Andes frog is one of around twelve species in its genus, Hypodactylus. These species were recently defined as a distinct unit from the vast Eleutherodactylus genus that at one point contained over 700 frog species!
Though there is still much work to be done regarding the taxonomy of this large group of frogs, which is distributed across Latin America, it is thought they diverged from all other amphibians over 50 million years ago. In evolutionary terms, this means these frogs are as distantly related to other amphibians as wolves are to tigers!
Cannatella’s Andes Frog is endemic to Peru and is only known from the northern slop of Abra Tapuna, Cordillera Oriental west of the Rio Apurimac. Its natural habitat is montane shrubland and cloud forest.
The species has been listed as Critically Endangered by the IUCN Red List as there is a continuing decline in the extent and quality of its habitat, which is mainly due to the clearance of land for agricultural purposes. The species does not occur in any protected areas and immediate protection and maintenance of the remaining habitat is necessary. Previous attempts to breed this species in captivity have been unsuccessful.
- Order: Anura
- Family: Craugastoridae
- Population: Unknown
- Trend: decreasing
This species is native to Peru and only known from the northern slope of Abra Tapuna, Vordillera Oriental west of the Rio Apurimac at an elevation of 3,710 metres above sea level.
Habitat and Ecology
This species can be found in montane shrubland and cloud forest. They breed by direct development; whereby the offspring bypass a larval stage and emerge from the egg as a miniature adult.