Amphibians in Madagascar


       Scaphiophryne brevis
       Dyscophus insularis

Madagascar’s amphibian fauna is highly exceptional. More than 99% of the species are endemic to the island. In 2003, 199 Malagasy amphibian species have been known (Glaw & Vences 2003), but newer publications indicate that the species number could be more than twice as high (Vieites et al. 2009). Living amphibians are classified in three major groups: frogs and toads (order Anura), salamanders and newts (order Urodela), and wormlike caecilians (order Gymnophiona), but only anurans are represented in Madagascar.

       Ptychadena mascareniensis (Maskarenfrosch)

Only four amphibian species have so far been found on the Mahafaly Plateau in southwestern Madagascar: Scaphiophryne brevis, Ptychadena mascareniensis (Mascarene Grass Frog), Dyscophus insularis and  Laliostoma labrosum (Raselimanana 2008). All four species are listed as not endangered and all species, except P. mascareniensis, are endemic to Madagascar.   



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Go directly to more details about the species diversity on the Mahafaly Plateau by clicking on the animal classes and plants below:



  • F. Glaw, M. Vences (2003). Introduction to amphibians. In: The natural history of Madagascar. S. Goodman, J.P. Benstead (eds). pp. 883-898. The University of Chicago Press. Chicago, London.
  • A.P. Raselimanana (2008). Herpétofaune des forêts sèches malgaches. Malagasy Nature, 1, 46-75.
  • D.R. Vieites, K.C. Wollenberg,  F. Andreone, J. Köhler, F. Glaw, M. Vences (2009). Vast underestimation of Madagascar's biodiversity evidenced by an integrative amphibian inventory. PNAS 2009 106 (20): 8267-8272.




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