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Baw Baw Frog

Philoria frosti


In 1985 the adult male population of Baw Baw frogs was estimated to be over ten thousand individuals.

Currently however, the total population is estimated to be less than 250 adult individuals, with no subpopulation greater than 50 individuals. The cause of this 80% decline in the past three generations is enigmatic, although possibilities include climate change and diseases, such as the Chytrid fungus. Females possess specially modified fingers, which they use to whip the mucous that surrounds their eggs into a protective foam nest, which can protect clutches of 50-185 eggs. Under natural conditions the embryonic period varies from 5-8 weeks, with non-feeding tadpoles hatching with a residual yolk mass that maintains them through to metamorphosis. Adult frogs remain inactive during the cold months before the breeding season, sheltering in refuges. The species’ habitat is protected within Baw Baw National Park, which covers an area of approximately 80 km sq. of the Baw Baw Plateau. The Baw Baw frog is listed as endangered in Australian legislation, and research and monitoring are currently in place for this species.

  • Order: Anura
  • Family: Limnodynastidae
  • Population: <250
  • Trend: decreasing
  • Size: 44.5-51.6mm

EDGE Score

EDGE Score: 6.03 (?)
ED Score: 24.93 (?)
GE / IUCN Red List (?)
Not Evaluated Data Deficient Least Concern Near Threatened Vulnerable Endangered Critically Endangered Extinct in the Wild Extinct


This species is restricted to the Baw Baw Plateau, 120km east of Melbourne, Australia.

Habitat and Ecology

The Baw Baw frog within sub-alpine wet heathland and in gullies within montane vegetation. The breeding areas are natural cavities within vegetation, logs and soil. The breeding season is between September to December and egg laying is confined just 2-3 weeks during this period. The frogs consume a variety of invertebrates, including a high percentage of earthworms.

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Conservation Actions

For each key category of conservation action, we calculated a conservation attention score based on expert information. In this graph, a higher score means the action is being carried out more intensively over more of the species range. The colour shows how important each action is considered to be for the conservation of this species.

Engaging stakeholders
Addressing threats
Status of knowledge
Management plan
Capacity building
Behaviour change
Awareness raising
  Score: 100 means the activity occurs at high level across more than 75% of the species range
Very Low

Overall Conservation Attention

We combined all of the expert information on conservation actions to calculate an overall conservation attention score for this species. Please help us to reach our goal of establishing dedicated conservation attention at “High” levels for all EDGE species.

Very Low Low Medium High

More information

Recent studies have grouped all possible conservation activities for any species into nine key categories (Washington et. al 2015). For each action, we asked experts for each species to assess the extent to which that action is being carried out and how much of the species’ range that action occurs in. For each action we used these two pieces of information to calculate the conservation attention score per action. A score of 100 means that the action is being carried out to a high level across at least 75% of the species range. We then combined the scores for all actions into an overall conservation attention score for the species. The experts also judged how important each category was to the conservation of that particular species.

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).

Tourism Other weather Logging Recreation Fire Invasive species Invasive species Invasive species Invasive species Invasive species Invasive species Invasive species Invasive species Air pollution

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.
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