Overview

Comprehensive Description

Description

Litoria ewingii are generally an overall light brown colour, although this may very from a white/grey to a dark brown background. They all have a white stripe along the jawline from the axilla, to at least, below the eye and sometimes to the end of the snout. Most frogs have a lighter patch on the top of the head, extending from between the eyes to the tip of the snout. The belly and throat are usually white or cream and the undersides of the thighs are bright orange. The eardrum (tympanum) is quite distinct and easily visible. The fingers and toes have slightly expanded tips (suckers) that are used for climbing, and webbing is usually absent. These are generally quite small frogs ranging from about 30-50 mm long (SVL).

  • Barker, J., Grigg, G. C., and Tyler, M. J. (1995). A Field Guide to Australian Frogs. Surrey Beatty and Sons, New South Wales.
  • Cogger, H.G. (1992). Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia. Reed Books, New South Wales.
  • Martin, A. A., and Littlejohn, M. J. (1982). Tasmanian Amphibians. University of Tasmania, Hobart.
  • Hero, J.-M., Littlejohn, M., and Marantelli, G. (1991). Frogwatch Field Guide to Victorian Frogs. Department of Conservation and Environment, Victoria.
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Distribution

Range Description

This Australian species occurs from the southeastern corner of South Australia, east along the south coast of Victoria and into far southeastern New South Wales. Isolated populations occur along the coast and ranges of central New South Wales. It is widely distributed in Tasmania. It has also been introduced to New Zealand where it is widespread across South Island and in the southwest North Island. It has recently been discovered in Northland near Dragaville and they are known from around Auckland. It has been recorded up to 1,200m asl.
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Distribution and Habitat

Range and population.
From the south-eastern corner of South Australia, east along the south coast of Victoria and into far south-eastern New South Wales. Isolated populations occur along the coast and ranges of central New South Wales. Widely distributed in Tasmania.The extent of occurrence of the species is approximately 311900 km2Widespread and common.
In New Zealand it has now become quite widespread over all of the South Island and most of the southern and central North Island, with the odd record in the northern areas.

  • Barker, J., Grigg, G. C., and Tyler, M. J. (1995). A Field Guide to Australian Frogs. Surrey Beatty and Sons, New South Wales.
  • Cogger, H.G. (1992). Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia. Reed Books, New South Wales.
  • Martin, A. A., and Littlejohn, M. J. (1982). Tasmanian Amphibians. University of Tasmania, Hobart.
  • Hero, J.-M., Littlejohn, M., and Marantelli, G. (1991). Frogwatch Field Guide to Victorian Frogs. Department of Conservation and Environment, Victoria.
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
This species is found in various habitats from alpine to semi-arid shrubland, but most commonly in flooded grassland or marshes. It can also be found in suburban gardens. It is common in both temporary and permanent water. Breeding occurs at any time of year with peaks in spring and autumn. Males call from the ground or in low vegetation (up to 2m above the ground) at the water’s edge or in water on floating vegetation. About 500-700 eggs are laid in small clumps attached to submerged vegetation, in still water in ponds, dams, lakes, streamside ponds and flooded roadside ditches. Metamorphosis takes 6-7 months.

Systems
  • Terrestrial
  • Freshwater
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Associations

Vertebrate Associates on Kangaroo Island, Australia

The most notable mammal present is the endemic Kangaroo Island Kangaroo (Macropus fuliginosus fuliginosus), the icon for whom the island was named upon European discovery in 1802. A smaller marsupial present on the island is the Tammar Wallaby (Macropus eugenii). An endemic dasyurid is the Critically Endangered Kangaroo Island Dunnart (Sminthopsis aitkeni), which is found only in the west of the island in Eucalyptus remota/E. cosmophylla open low mallee, E. baxteri low woodland or E. baxteri/E. remota low open woodland. The Common Brush-tailed Possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) is a widespread folivore native to Australia.

Monotremes are also represented on the island. There is also an introduced population of the Duck-billed Platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) in the western part of the island in Flinders Chase National Park. The Short-beaked Echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus) is also found moderately widespread on Kangaroo Island.

Chiroptera species on Kangaroo Island include the Yellow-bellied Pouched Bat (Saccolaimus flaviventris), which species is rather widespread in Australia and also occurs in Papua New Guinea. Australia's largest molossid, the White-striped Free-tail Bat (Tadarida australis) is found on Kangaroo Island. Another bat found on the island is the Southern Forest Bat (Eptesicus regulus), a species endemic to southern Australia (including Tasmania).

Several anuran species are found on Kangaroo island: Brown Tree Frog (Litoria ewingii), Spotted Marsh Frog (Limnodynastes tasmaniensis), Painted Spadefoot Frog (Neobatrachus pictus), Brown Toadlet (Pseudophryne bibroni) and Brown Froglet (Crinia signifera).

The Heath Monitor (Varanus rosenbergi ) is a lizard that grows up to a metre in length, preying on smaller reptiles, juvenile birds and eggs; it is frequently observed on warmer days basking in the sunlight or scavenging on roadkill. The Black Tiger Snake (Notechis ater) is found on Kangaroo Island. Another reptile particularly associated with this locale is the Kangaroo Island Copperhead (Austrelaps labialis).

The Glossy Black Cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus lathami) is found on the island, especially in the western part, where its preferred food, fruit of the Drooping Sheoak, is abundant. The Kangaroo Island Emu (Dromaius baudinianus) became extinct during the 1820s from over-hunting and habitat destruction due to burning.

Marine mammals that are observed on the island include the Australian Sea Lion (Neophoca cinerea) and New Zealand Fur Seal (Arctocephalus forsteri), each species of which is native to Kangaroo Island, and abundant at Admiral's Arch as well as at Seal Bay.

Kangaroo Island is not so adversely impacted by alien species grazers as parts of the mainland. No rabbit species are present on the island, and introduced (but escaped) Domestic Goats (Capra hircus) and pigs (Sus scrofa) have generated only minor issues. However, a Koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) population introduced to the island in the 1920s has caused significant damage to certain woodland communities, especially to Manna Gum trees.

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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LC
Least Concern

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2004

Assessor/s
Jean-Marc Hero, Ben Bell, Frank Lemckert, Peter Robertson, Peter Brown

Reviewer/s
Global Amphibian Assessment Coordinating Team (Simon Stuart, Janice Chanson and Neil Cox)

Contributor/s

Justification
Listed as Least Concern in view of its wide distribution, tolerance of a broad range of habitats, presumed large population, and because it is unlikely to be declining fast enough to qualify for listing in a more threatened category.
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Population

Population
It is a widespread and common species in Australia. In New Zealand there are many thousands, but local declines possibly due to chytridiomycosis have been observed.

Population Trend
Stable
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Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors

Various habitats from alpine to semi-arid shrubland, but most common in flooded grassland or marshes. Can also be found in suburban gardens. Common in both temporary and permanent water.

Breeding occurs at any time of year with peaks in spring and autumn. Males call from the ground or in low vegetation at the water's edge or in water on floating vegetation. About 500 - 700 eggs are laid in small clumps attached to submerged vegetation. In still water in ponds, dams, lakes, streamside ponds and flooded roadside ditches. Metamorphosis takes 6-7 months.

  • Barker, J., Grigg, G. C., and Tyler, M. J. (1995). A Field Guide to Australian Frogs. Surrey Beatty and Sons, New South Wales.
  • Cogger, H.G. (1992). Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia. Reed Books, New South Wales.
  • Martin, A. A., and Littlejohn, M. J. (1982). Tasmanian Amphibians. University of Tasmania, Hobart.
  • Hero, J.-M., Littlejohn, M., and Marantelli, G. (1991). Frogwatch Field Guide to Victorian Frogs. Department of Conservation and Environment, Victoria.
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Threats

Major Threats
Water pollution where the species occurs in urban areas, drainage of wetlands and the construction of dams are localized threats. Chytrid fungus or other/associated pathogens might be a threat to the species in its native range, and might already be affecting the species in its introduced range in New Zealand. Chytrid fungus was detected in this species in Woodville, South Australia. The Utilisation information refers to New Zealand populations.
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Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors

Threats: Water pollution where the species occurs in urban areas.

  • Barker, J., Grigg, G. C., and Tyler, M. J. (1995). A Field Guide to Australian Frogs. Surrey Beatty and Sons, New South Wales.
  • Cogger, H.G. (1992). Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia. Reed Books, New South Wales.
  • Martin, A. A., and Littlejohn, M. J. (1982). Tasmanian Amphibians. University of Tasmania, Hobart.
  • Hero, J.-M., Littlejohn, M., and Marantelli, G. (1991). Frogwatch Field Guide to Victorian Frogs. Department of Conservation and Environment, Victoria.
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
Its range includes several protected areas throughout its range. Monitoring of the population is necessary in order to detect any occurrence of chytridiomycosis.
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Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Risks

Relation to Humans

This species is a popular species with children and many tadpoles are raised to the froglet stage. Much of its distribution in New Zealand can be correlated with deliberate releases by humans of the newly metamorphosed froglets.

  • Barker, J., Grigg, G. C., and Tyler, M. J. (1995). A Field Guide to Australian Frogs. Surrey Beatty and Sons, New South Wales.
  • Cogger, H.G. (1992). Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia. Reed Books, New South Wales.
  • Martin, A. A., and Littlejohn, M. J. (1982). Tasmanian Amphibians. University of Tasmania, Hobart.
  • Hero, J.-M., Littlejohn, M., and Marantelli, G. (1991). Frogwatch Field Guide to Victorian Frogs. Department of Conservation and Environment, Victoria.
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Wikipedia

Southern Brown tree frog

"Brown tree frog" redirects here. For the shrub frog native to China, see Brown tree frog (Asia).
Tadpole
In eastern Victoria

The southern brown tree frog, brown tree frog, whistling tree frog, or Ewing's tree frog (Litoria ewingii)[1] is a species of tree frog native to most of southern Victoria, eastern South Australia, southern New South Wales from about Ulladulla — although this species is reported to occur further north — and throughout Tasmania including the Bass Strait Islands, in which state it is the most frequently encountered frog. It has been introduced to New Zealand, where it can be locally abundant.

Physical description[edit]

This species reaches 45 mm in length. It is pale to dark brown on the dorsal surface, with a broad darker patch starting at the eyes and covering the majority of the back, although pure green and green striped colour morphs are also common. A dark band starting at the nostril runs across the eye and tympanum to the shoulder, and a pale white stripe below this runs from the mouth to the arm. The backs of the thighs are orange, and no black marbling is present (except specimens from the Adelaide region), distinguishing this species from the similar whistling tree frog, (Litoria verreauxii). Some specimens from western Victoria and south eastern South Australia can be partially or entirely green. The belly is cream.

Ecology and behaviour[edit]


This species is found in a wide range of habitats,including forests, farmland, heathland, semiarid areas, alpine regions, and suburban areas. They are particularly common in parts of suburban Adelaide, Melbourne, and Hobart, where they are often observed upon window panes at night, attracted by flying insects. Males make a whistling weep-weep-weep call from beside or floating in the water of, dam impoundments, ditches, ponds, and stream-side pools. Males call all year round, particularly after rain. Eggs are easily identifiable, being wound around submerged grass stems, aquatic vegetation, and sticks. These frogs can freeze and survive.[2]

As a pet[edit]

In Australia, this animal may be kept without any wildlife license when purchased from a breeder. It is illegal to remove any specimens from the wild. Litoria ewingi does not require any UV supplementation, it simply requires a light cycle and a small water source as they are an arboreal species.

Citations[edit]

  1. ^ "Frogs of Australia: Litoria ewingi". Amphibian Research Centre. 
  2. ^ Kalinka M. J. Rexer-Huber, Phillip J. Bishop and David A. Wharton; (2011) Skin ice nucleators and glycerol in the freezing-tolerant frog Litoria ewingii. Journal of Comparative Physiology B: Biochemical, Systemic, and Environmental Physiology 4 March 2011

References[edit]

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