Comprehensive DescriptionRead full entry
Neobatrachus albipes is a moderate size burrowing frog. The total male body length is approximatly 33.2 to 45.4 mm and females are approximately 35.3 mm snout-vent length. These frogs have sloped heads that are shorter than wide. From the dorsal view the snout is rounded and from the profile the snout is almost flat, appearing almost square. The slightly laterally nostrils are pointed upward and the large eyes are distinct. The tympanum is taller than it is wide and, although, covered with skin is obvious. Prominent paratoid glands can be found extending medially from behind the tympanum to the middle of the back. This species has moderate limbs. Relative finger lengths are 3 > 1 > 2 > 4 and fingers are unwebbed, slender, and short. Each finger has an obvious subarticular tubercle at the first joint. Tubercles can also be found between the first and second fingers and second and third fingers. In males, nuptial pads can be found starting at the base of the first two fingers and extending to the distal joints. Relatively toe lengths are 4 > 3 > 5 > 2 > 1 and toes are Slender and webbed. Toe webbing covers first, second, and third toes fully, but only extends to the second joint on toes four and five (Roberts et al. 1991)
With the exception of N. pelobatoides, N. albipes can be diagnosed by its unpigmented metatarsal tubercle. Neobatrachus albipes can be differentiated from N. pelobatoides by the white coloration on the top of the foot of N. albipes and N. albipes male call having fewer pulse numbers and higher pulse rates and dominant frequencies than N. pelobatoides (Roberts et al. 1991).
In life, the N. albipes appears to be able to change color to blend in with its background. In dark backgrounds, the dorsum is brown with markings that are dark with undefined edges. A broad lighter "V" shape can be found on the skin above and between the eyes. In light backgrounds, the dorsum of N. albipes is pale gray to light yellow-green; this is especially true around the flanks and back half of the body. In both backgrounds, the upper surface of the feet and toes are white, giving the species its common name. When preserved, the dorsal surface of the frog appears as when the live frog is on a dark background. The ventral surface, legs, upper arms and anterior of the forearms, and inner margin of the feet of the frog are creamy-white. Neobatrachus albipes has dark brown plantar and palmer areas. The skin on the anterior and lateral margins of the submandibular area is dark grey-brown. The upper surface of the foot and toes are white and the skin at the ankle is translucent showing dark brown muscle underneath (Roberts et al. 1991).
Some frogs also have a mid-dorsal strip that extends from a point level with the tympanum to the cloaca. The paratoid glands can vary in their distinctiveness and some specimens are a lighter brown-yellow when preserved. Individuals also have variation in the distinctiveness of the light bar between their eyes and some males have nuptial pads that extend to their third finger (Roberts et al. 1991).