Distribution and Habitat
Taudactylus eungellensis is restricted to the ranges w. of Mackay, mid-e. Qld, from Clarke Range in the n. to Finch Hatton Gorge and Credition in the s. at altitudes between 200-1000 m (Ingram 1980; Covacevich & McDonald 1993). The area of occurrence of the species is less than 500 km2 (map in McDonald 1990). Taudactylus eungellensis was considered common across its range until Jan. 1985 when the first signs of the decline (Winter & McDonald 1986) were observed at lower altitudes (ie. about 400 m). At higher altitude the frogs were common until Mar. 1985, but were absent in Jun. of that year (McDonald 1990). A small population was recorded in the s. region of its distribution in Jun. 1986, but disappeared after that date (McDonald 1990). Tadpoles were present in the s. areas of the distribution until May 1987 (McDonald 1990). After a period of apparent absence, an individual was rediscovered in 1992 (Couper 1992) and the species has subsequently been recorded at nine scattered locations within Eungella NP (McNellie & Hero 1994; Retallick et al. 1997; Hero et al. 1998; Retallick 1998).
Populations of the species were monitored throughout 1994-1998 along sections of streams at altitudes between 180 and 980 m (Retallick et al. 1997; Retallick 1998). Population sizes differed noticeably between sites but appeared to be consistent over time. Interestingly, a significant proportion of each population was recaptured with each visit, which suggests that the population turnover is low, and that the population size is also low. The monitored populations are a large population at Rawson Ck, a medium-sized population at Dooloomai Falls, and a small population at Tree Fern Ck. Frogs at other sites were caught too irregularly to provide useful information. Although the numbers of frogs found at these sites are encouraging and appear to be slowly increasing (Retallick et al. 1997), at Dooloomai Falls the current number of frogs remain substantially lower than were recorded before the precipitous population declines in 1985/86 (McDonald pers. comm. in Retallick et al. 1997).
Taudactylus eungellensis is known from Eungella NP, Cathu and Mt Pelion SF, SF 62 Eungella and Gamma, and on Dalrymple Road Farm adjacent to the NP and SF (Tyler 1997).
Taudactylus eungellensis occurs along small creeks in rainforest as well as wet sclerophyll forest (Liem & Hosmer 1973). The immediate streamside habitat is dense rainforest with ferns, vines, palms and epiphytes in the understorey (Retallick et al. 1997). The species inhabits exposed steep, rocky sections of stream within splash zones of waterfalls and cascades (McNellie & Hero 1994; Retallick et al. 1997) and may be found under rocks and crevices or on emergent rocks in the stream (Liem & Hosmer 1973; Retallick et al. 1997). Tadpoles are found in first to third order streams in large and relatively still mid-stream pools, or partially connected stream-side pools (Retallick & Hero 1998). Tadpoles have been observed in the benthic layer among rocks, litter, and detritus (Retallick & Hero 1998).