IUCN threat status:

Least Concern (LC)

Comprehensive Description

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Description

Espadarana prosoblepon is a medium-sized centrolenid frog (Cisneros-Heredia and McDiarmid 2007), measuring 21-28 mm in males and 25-31 mm in females. The head is broader than it is long, with a truncate snout, and appears round when viewed from above (Savage 2002). The eyes are large and bulging, with a horizontally elliptical pupil (Leenders 2001), and the space between the eyes measuring less than the diameter of one eye (Savage 2002). The tympanum is indistinct. Vomerine teeth are present in a slightly diagonal patch between choanae, separated medially (Savage 2002). Bones and intestines are visible through skin, although the intestines are less discernible because they are covered by a white membrane, the parietal peritoneal sheath (Leenders 2001; Savage 2002). The skin is smooth, although there are two regions where the skin becomes granular: on the belly below the vent and on the ventral surface of the thighs. On the thighs, the granular skin surrounds cloacal ornamentations (a pair of warts, one on each thigh) (Cisneros-Heredia and McDiarmid 2007).

Finger I is longer than finger II. The fingers and toes have truncate discs, and the disc on finger III usually has a diameter equal to that of the eye (Cisneros-Heredia and McDiarmid 2007). Fingers are webbed, although there is no webbing between fingers I and II. A bubble-like structure called the “bulla” is embedded in the webbing between the outer fingers (Cisneros-Heredia and McDiarmid 2007). Toe webbing is moderate. The webbing formula for fingers and toes is as follows: Fingers = II 2-3 ¾ III 2 ½-1 ½ IV. Toes = I 1+-2 ½ II 1 ½-1 ¼ III 1 ¼-2 ¼ IV 2 ½-1 ½ V (Savage 2002). On the hand, the thenar tubercle is elongate, and the palmar tubercle is round and large; on the foot, the inner metatarsal tubercle is small, flat, and elongate, and the outer metatarsal tubercle is small and ovoid. There is no tarsal tubercle. A well-developed nuptial pad is present on outer lateral and dorsal surfaces of the thumb base in adult males (Savage 2002). Breeding males also develop conspicuous, abundant spicules. All males have a sharp, protruding spur on the upper arm called the humeral spine. Females and juvenile males will sometimes exhibit an underdeveloped version of the spine (Cisneros-Heredia and McDiarmid 2007).

Dorsal surfaces are emerald green, usually with black flecks. False ocelli, (irregular light spots surrounded by ill-defined dark borders, which form a reticulated pattern) are present in some specimens (Cisneros-Heredia and McDiarmid 2007). Finger coloration is slightly paler than the dorsum (Cisneros-Heredia and McDiarmid 2007). The ventral coloration is yellow (Savage 2002). Bones are green because of the presence of biliverdin (Cisneros-Heredia and McDiarmid 2007). The iris is gray/silver (Leenders 2001) and has a fine, dark reticulation (Cisneros-Heredia and McDiarmid 2007).

At stage 25, the total length of the tadpole is 12.3 mm (Starrett 1960). The larval body shape is elongate and somewhat depressed, with a long, rounded tail and very low fins (Starrett 1960). Tadpoles have dorsal, C-shaped eyes and dorsal nostrils (Starrett 1960). The mouth is ventral and nearly terminal, with wide, papillate lips (Starrett 1960). It has a complete oral disc with medium-sized beaks and 2/3 rows of denticles present (Starrett 1960; Cisneros-Heredia and McDiarmid 2007). The spiracle is midlateral, posterior, and sinistral (Starrett 1960). The vent tube is long and medially located (Starrett 1960).

At hatching the tadpole is black (Starrett 1960), with the coloration changing later in development to a pale brown dorsally; the ventral coloration is lighter but can appear bright red (Savage 2002). There are brown dorsal and lateral streaks on the musculature and fins anteriorly, with uniform coloration posteriorly except for the fin margins (Starrett 1960).

The karyotype is 2N = 20 (Duellman 1967).

A Spanish-language species account can be found at the website of Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad (INBio).

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