German Journal of Herpetology

Székely, D., P. Székely, F. Stănescu, D. Cogălniceanu & U. Sinsch

In Issues 2018

Breed fast, die young: demography of a poorly known fossorial frog from the xeric Neotropics. pp. 37-44.

Abstract. We successfully used skeletochronology to provide the first detailed demographic data regarding Ceratophrys stolzmanni, a cryptic, fossorial amphibian inhabiting the xeric Neotropics. We observed a female-biased sexual size dimorphism, but no differences in age parameters between the two sexes. Growth rate is accelerated during the first year of life, both before and after metamorphosis, followed by a rapid sexual maturation and a short lifespan. Both males and females reached sexual maturity before they were one year old, the mean age was two years, and longevity was low for both sexes, with only 2% of the tested individuals, all females, reaching the age of four years. We discuss the implications of the observed aging and growth patterns for the long-term survival and conservation of the species, comparing our results to other tropical species.

Key words. Amphibia, Anura, Ceratophryidae, age, size, longevity, sexual dimorphism, Pacific dry forest.