Pyxicephalus edulis

Pyxicephalus edulis Peters, 1854

Original Published Description:

Peters, W. (1854).  Diagnose neuer Batrachier, welche zusammen mit der frueher (24. Juli und 17. August) gegebenen Uebersicht der Schlangen und Eidechsen mitgetheilt werden. Ber. Bekanntmach. geeignet. Verh. Koenigl.- Preuss. Akad. Wiss. Berlin. November, 614-628.
 

Common Names

Lesser Bull-frog (English), Peter's Bullfrog (English), Edible Bullfrog (English), Edible Frog (English)

Languages: English

Overview

Distribution

The species is widespread in Central and East Africa; they occur along the northeastern border of South Africa  which indicates that P. edulis is also likely to occur in Botswana and Zimbabwe. It can also be found in northern and eastern Swaziland (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).

Author(s): Cook, C.L.; Minter, L.R.
Rights holder(s): Cook, C.L.; Minter, L.R.

Description

Diagnostic Description

This is a large rotund frog with short legs. The dorsum is brown to green and covered in rough glands that are elongate or round. There are projections on the lower jaw that resemble teeth. The tympanum is small, but distinctly visible. The first finger is longer than the second. The toes are webbed only at the base (Harper et al., 2010).

Author(s): Zimkus, Breda
Rights holder(s): Zimkus, Breda

Size

Males do not exceed 120 mm in snout–vent length (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).

Males are up to 100 mm and females up to 145 mm in snout-vent length (Harper et al., 2010).

Author(s): Zimkus, Breda
Rights holder(s): Zimkus, Breda

Morphology

The original description of this speciesby Peters (1854) is woefully inadequate, including only the following: "Pedibus longitudine corpori aequalibus; olivaceo-viridis, maculis fuscis, linea dorsali flava." This is translated by B. Zimkus to the following: "Foot length equal to the body; olive-green, dark spots, yellow dorsal line."

Author(s): Cook, C.L.; Minter, L.R.
Rights holder(s): Cook, C.L.; Minter, L.R.

Comparisons

This was previously considered a subspecies of P. adspersus, but the teeth-like projections and large size are distinctive (Harper et al., 2010).

Author(s): Zimkus, Breda
Rights holder(s): Zimkus, Breda

Ecology

Habitat and Ecology

Jacobsen (1989) found that this species inhabits several bushveld vegetation types in the northeastern parts of the Savanna Biome, from sea level to an altitude of about 1500 m (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).

This species inhabits flooded grasslands and shrubland up to 1500 m (Harper et al., 2010).

Author(s): Cook, C.L.; Minter, L.R.
Rights holder(s): Cook, C.L.; Minter, L.R.

Associations

Food items include a variety of invertebrates and small vertebrates, including frogs. Several bird species, Nile Monitors Varanus niloticus and humans are known to prey on this species (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).

Author(s): Cook, C.L.; Minter, L.R.
Rights holder(s): Cook, C.L.; Minter, L.R.

Life History

Reproduction

Flat, low-lying areas in open, grassy woodland, that become flooded after heavy rain or contain shallow, seasonal pans, constitute prime breeding habitat and support large breeding populations. Channing et al. (1994a) found this species breeding in rice paddies in Mozambique. Breeding takes place at night after heavy rain. No aggressive behaviour was observed in a breeding population near Beira (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).

Breeding takes place in shallow pools with ample vegetation. Females lay several thousand eggs singly and scattered. Males guard tadpoles (Harper et al., 2010).

Author(s): Zimkus, Breda; Cook, C.L.; Minter, L.R.
Rights holder(s): Zimkus, Breda; Cook, C.L.; Minter, L.R.

Advertisement Call

The advertisement call was described by Channing (2001) as sounding like “the barking of a small dog."

Author(s): Zimkus, Breda
Rights holder(s): Zimkus, Breda

Behaviour

Activity and Special Behaviors

P. edulis spends up to 10 months of the year in a dormant state beneath the soil surface (Mitchell 1946), the species products a cocoon to prevent desiccation (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).

This is a fossorial species that is seen only in the rainy season (Harper et al., 2010).

Author(s): Zimkus, Breda; Cook, C.L.; Minter, L.R.
Rights holder(s): Zimkus, Breda; Cook, C.L.; Minter, L.R.

Conservation

IUCN Red List Category and Justification of Conservation Status

More detailed studies of habitat requirements, breeding biology, duration of the larval stage and development are recommended for this species (Text from Minter et al., 2004, © SI/MAB Biodiversity Program).

Author(s): Cook, C.L.; Minter, L.R.
Rights holder(s): Cook, C.L.; Minter, L.R.

Relevance

Uses

In Burkino Faso, P. edulis is one of many frog species that are traded and it is the second most consumed frog species. In Malanville, Benin, it is the third most commonly "caught and traded frog." Because villagers are employed to catch and prepare frogs, and because they are an "important international trading item",  frogs are an integral part of the economy in areas with large frog populations. Aside from their value as an essential food source, they may also be used for cultural reasons and as traditional medicine in areas where Western medicine is not available. The overexploitation of frogs has lead to villagers observing high decline rates in several species of frog, P. edulis having the highest reported rate among them. (Mohneke, 2010)

Author(s): Manalel, Jasmine
Rights holder(s): Manalel, Jasmine

Taxonomy

  • Maltzania bufonia Boettger, 1881 (synonym)
  • Rana maltzanii Boulenger, 1882 (synonym)
  • Phrynopsis boulengerii Pfeffer, 1893 (synonym)
  • Pyxicephalus flavigula Calabresi, 1916 (synonym)
  • Rana bufonia — Noble, 1924 (synonym)
  • Phrynopsis usambarae Ahl, 1924 (synonym)
  • Rana flavicula — Scortecci, 1932 (synonym)
  • Rana (Pyxicephalus) flavigula — Scortecci, 1933 (synonym)
  • Rana adspersa edulis — Loveridge, 1950 (synonym)
  • Rana adspersa maltzanii — Loveridge, 1950 (synonym)
  • Rana (Pyxicephalus) reiensis Monard, 1951 (synonym)
  • Rana (Pyxicephalus) adspersa reiensis — Perret and Mertens, 1957 (synonym)
  • Pyxicephalus adspersus edulis — Laurent In Gans, Laurent, and Pandit, 1965 (synonym)
  • Pyxicephalus edulis — Perret, 1966 (synonym)
  • Rana (Pyxicephalus) adspersa edulis — Dubois, 1981 (synonym)
  • Rana (Pyxicephalus) adspersa angusticeps — Dubois, 1981 (synonym)
  • Pyxicephalus adspersus angusticeps Parry, 1982 (synonym)
  • Pyxicephalus adspersus angusticeps Parry, 1982 (synonym)

References

Channing, A., Hendricks D., & Dawood A. (1994).  Description of a new moss frog from the south-western Cape (Anura: Ranidae). South African Journal of Zoology. 240-243.
Harper, E. B., Measey G. J., Patrick D. A., Menegon M., & Vonesh J. R. (2010).  Field Guide to Amphibians of the Eastern Arc Mountains and Coastal Forests of Tanzania and Kenya. 320. Nairobi, Kenya: Camerapix Publishers International.
 
Jacobsen, N. H. G. (1989).  A Herpetological Survey of the Transvaal. Ph.D., Durban : University of Natal.
Loveridge, A. (1951).  On reptiles and amphibians from Tanganyika Territory collected by C.J.P. Ionides. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology. 106(4), 177-204.
Mitchell, B. L. (1946).  A naturalist in Nyasaland. . Nyasaland Agricultural Quarterly Journal . 1-47.
Mohneke, M., Onadeko A. B., Hirschfeld M., & Rödel M-O. (2010).  Dried or Fried: Amphibians in Local and Regional Food Markets in West Africa. TRAFFIC Bulletin. 22, 117-128.
Peters, W. (1854).  Diagnose neuer Batrachier, welche zusammen mit der frueher (24. Juli und 17. August) gegebenen Uebersicht der Schlangen und Eidechsen mitgetheilt werden. Ber. Bekanntmach. geeignet. Verh. Koenigl.- Preuss. Akad. Wiss. Berlin. November, 614-628.
 
Poynton, J. C., & Broadley D. G. (1985).  Amphibia Zambesiaca 2: Ranidae. Ann. Natal Mus.. 27, 115-181.
FileSize (kb)Uploaded
Harper_2010_1-143.pdf37642010-05-06T19:06:17Z
Harper_2010_144-320.pdf4843.62010-05-06T19:06:33Z
Peters_1854.pdf23762010-05-13T19:29:20Z