Skip to content

Botsford’s Leaf-litter Frog

Leptobrachella botsfordi


Botsford’s leaf-litter frog was only described by science in 2013.

Virtually nothing is known about this species, the larvae remain undescribed. The species occurs at higher elevations than any other leaf-litter frog and is one of only two amphibians in Vietnam that has been assessed as Critically Endangered by the IUCN.

The most immediate threat to this species is habitat degradation associated with tourism. This species is currently known from a single stream, which is polluted by garbage and waste runoff from toilets from a nearby tourist camp site. Bamboo and trees near the stream have also been harvested for fuel wood and construction and gravel from the stream bed itself has also been quarried for construction materials.

Fortunately, these threats are reversible and ZSL has been working with an international team from Australia and Vietnam to monitor this species and develop a conservation action plan which is now in the process of being implemented.

  • Order: Anura
  • Family: Megophryidae
  • Population: Unknown
  • Trend: decreasing
  • Size: 29.1–32.6 mm (?)
  • Weight: 2.0-3.0g

EDGE Score

EDGE Score: 5.87 (?)
ED Score: 21.1 (?)
GE / IUCN Red List (?)
Not Evaluated Data Deficient Least Concern Near Threatened Vulnerable Endangered Critically Endangered Extinct in the Wild Extinct


This species is only known from a single stream in Hoang Lien National park (Lao Cai Province). It has only been reported from 2,795–2,815 m elevation on Mount Fansipan, Vietnam’s highest mountain. The species could potentially occur more widely although it is currently estimated that the species occurs at a single threatened site that is only 8km².

Habitat and Ecology

Individuals have been found near a swift flowing stream.

Find out more

This wordcloud illustrates the threats facing this species. The size of each word indicates the extent of a species range that is affected by that threat (larger size means a greater area is affected). The colour of the word indicates how much that threat impacts the species (darker shades of red mean the threat is more severe).

Habitat change Extreme temperatures Fire Wastewater Garbage

Threat wordcloud key:

Small area affected
Large area affected
Least severe
Most severe
Severity unknown
Source: The IUCN List of Threatened Species. Version 2017.1.
Available at:

Download the Survival Blueprint for this species below. Each survival blueprint is compiled by an EDGE Fellow working on the species with input from collaborators and stakeholders. The Survival Blueprint provides a status review (information on the distribution, protection status, habitat & ecology, threat and stakeholder analysis) and more information on the action programme listed here.  

Vision (30-50 years)

To improve knowledge of and develop conservation strategies for Botsford’s leaf-litter frog and other amphibian species in Hoang Lien Range, northwest Vietnam.

Goal (5-10 years)

To improve scientific understanding of Botsford’s leaf-litter frog and other amphibian species in Hoang Lien Range and enabling local people to understand their impact on the target species’ habitat.


Continue to monitor the Botsford's leaf-litter frog (BLLF) and other amphibian species on Hoang Lien Range Critical
Continue to assess the specific threats impacting BLLF focusing on emerging infectious disease and how it impacts frog survival High
Raising local understanding about the BLLF and other amphibian species on Hoang Lien Range High
Updating the conservation status of the species as included this species in the Local national Red List Data Book and legally protection Degree Medium

Nguyen Thanh Luan

  • Project name: Troubling tourism; conserving Vietnam's most threatened amphibian
  • Project site: Hoang Lien National Park, Vietnam
  • Active: 2018 - ongoing
Find out more