German Journal of Herpetology

Jungfer, K.-H.

In Issues 2023

Squeeze me, please me: the reproductive biology of the Amazonian bamboo frog Nyctimantis rugiceps (Anura: Hylidae), with notes on possible interspecific brood parasitism and skin secretions. pp. 229-238.

Abstract. Reproduction of the western Amazonian tree frog Nyctimantis rugiceps, a species breeding in bamboo internodes and tree holes, was studied in the field and laboratory. Once a male had attracted a female, the pair attached 206–553 (mean = 357.4) eggs to the phytotelme wall at water level. Subsequently, the male left the site, while the female regularly returned to the hatched larvae after 2–9 (mean = 5.1) days and deposited 211–878 (mean = 446.6) unfertilized nutritive eggs that the larvae bit open and consumed when feeding for the first time, and subsequently swallowed wholly. Time to metamorphosis depended on the number of tadpoles present, but the numbers that hatched and reached metamorphosis were low (2–15 larvae). A possible case of egg parasitism by a Ranitomeya variabilis larva was observed. Skin secretions of a dying frog were probably a toxin known to be harmful even to humans. Some morphological features of N. rugiceps are discussed, especially with respect to breeding in phytotelmes and oophagy.

Key words. Amphibia, reproduction, parental care, oophagy, phytotelmes, egg parasitism, Dendrobatidae, Ranitomeya varia­bilis larva, skin toxin, Ecuador.

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