Atelopus chiriquiensis Shreve, 1936

Chiriqui harlequin toad, Chiriqui harlequin frog, Lewis' stubfoot toad



Taxonomy & Nomenclature



Conservation Status


Last record: 1996 (Costa Rica), late 1990's (Panama)

IUCN RedList status: Extinct



Costa Rica & Panama


Biology & Ecology










Original scientific description:

Shreve, B. (1936). A new Atelopus from Panama and a new Hemidactylus from Colombia. Occasional Papers of the Boston Society of Natural History 8: 269–272.

Other references:

ANAM. 2011. Plan de accion para la conservacion de los anfibios en Panama. Panama City: Autoridad Nacional del Ambiente.

Garcia-Rodriguez, A., Chaves, G., Benavides-Varela, C. and Puschendorf, R. 2012. Where are the survivors? Tracking relictual populations of endangered frogs in Costa Rica. Diversity and Distributions 18: 204.

Gratwicke, B., Ross, H., Batista, A., Chaves, G., Crawford, A.J., Lara, L.E., Estrada, A., Evans, M., Garelle, D., Guerrel, J., Hertz, A., Hughey, M., Jaramillo, C. A., Klocke, B., Mandica, M., Medina, D., Richards-Zawacki, C. L., Ryan, M. J., Sosa-Bartuano, A., Voyles, J., Walker, B., Woodhams, D.C. and Ibáñez, R. 2016. Evaluating the probability of avoiding disease-related extinctions of Panamanian amphibians through captive-breeding programs. Animal Conservation.

Ibáñez, R., Solís, F., Jaramillo, C. and Rand, S. 2000. An overview of the herpetology of Panama. In: J.D. Johnson, R.G. Webb and O.A. Flores-Villela (eds), Mesoamerican Herpetology: Systematics, Zoogeography and Conservation, pp. 159-170. The University of Texas at El Paso, El Paso, Texas.

IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group. (2020). Atelopus chiriquiensis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2020: e.T54498A54340769. Downloaded on 23 June 2021.

Jaslow, A. P. (1979). Vocalization and aggression in Atelopus chiriquiensis (Amphibia, Anura, Bufonidae). J. Herpetol. 13(2):141-145.

Jaynes, Kyle E. et al. (2022). Harlequin frog rediscoveries provide insights into species persistence in the face of drastic amphibian declines. Biological Conservation 276: 109784.

Kim, Y. H., Kim, Y. B., & Yotsu-Yamashita, M. (2003). Potent neurotoxins: tetrodotoxin, chiriquitoxin, and zetekitoxin from Atelopus frogs in Central America. Toxin Reviews 22(4): 521-532. [Abstract]

Leenders, T. 2001. A Guide to Amphibians and Reptiles of Costa Rica. Zona Tropical Publications, Miami, Florida.

Lindquist, E.D. and Swihart, D.W. (1997). Atelopus chiriquiensis (Chiriqui harlequin frog): mating behaviour and egg laying. Herpetological Review 28: 145-46.

Lips, K.R. 1998. Decline of a tropical montane amphibian fauna. Conservation Biology 12: 106-117.

Lips, K.R. 1999. Mass mortality and population declines of anurans at an upland site in western Panama. Conservation Biology: 117-125.

Lips, K.R., Green, D.E. and Papendick, R. 2003. Chytridiomycosis in wild frogs from southern Costa Rica. Journal of Herpetology 37: 215-218.

Karen Lips, Roberto Ibáñez, Federico Bolaños, Gerardo Chaves, Frank Solís, Jay Savage, César Jaramillo, Querube Fuenmayor, A. Castillo. (2010). Atelopus chiriquiensis. In: IUCN 2012. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.2. ( Downloaded on 10 February 2013.

Lips, K.R., Reeve, J.D. and Witters, L.R. 2003. Ecological traits predicting amphibian population declines in Central America. Conservation Biology: 1078-1088.

Lötters, S. 1996. The Neotropical Toad Genus Atelopus. Checklist - Biology - Distribution. Vences, M. and Glaw, F. Verlags GbR, Köln, Germany.

Pavelka, L. A., Kim, Y. H., and Mosher, H. S. (1977). Tetrodotoxin and tetrodotoxin-like compounds from the eggs of the Costa Rican frog, Atelopus chiriquiensis. Toxicon 15(2): 135-139.

Pounds, J.A., Bustamante, M.R., Coloma, L.A., Consuegra, J.A., Fogden, M.P.L., Foster, P.N., La Marca, E., Masters, K.L., Merino-Viteri, A., Puschendorf, R., Ron, S.R., Sánchez-Azofeifa, G.A., Still, C.J. and Young, B.E. 2006. Widespread amphibian extinctions from epidemic disease driven by global warming. Nature 439: 161-167.

Ramírez, Juan P. et al. (2020). Recent and Rapid Radiation of the Highly Endangered Harlequin Frogs (Atelopus) into Central America Inferred from Mitochondrial DNA Sequences. Diversity 12(9): 360.

Savage, J. M. (1972). The harlequin frogs, genus Atelopus, of Costa Rica, and western Panama. Herpetologica 1972: 77-94.

Savage, J.M. 2002. The Amphibians and Reptiles of Costa Rica: A Herpetofauna between two Continents, between two Seas. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

Young, B., Sedaghatkish, G., Roca, E. and Fuenmayor, Q. 1999. El Estatus de la Conservación de la Herpetofauna de Panamá: Resumen del Primer Taller Internacional sobre la Herpetofauna de Panamá. The Nature Conservancy, Arlington, Virginia.


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