Frog of the Week

Palawan Horned Frog (Pelobatrachus ligayae)

Palawan Horned Frog
photo by Albert Kang

Common Name: Palawan Horned Frog
Scientific Name: Pelobatrachus ligayae
Family: Megophrynidae – Asian Leaf Litter Frog family
Locations: Philippines
Size: 2.7 – 4.3 inches (70 – 110 mm)

The Palawan Horned Frog lives in the leaf litter of montane and lowland rainforests on the islands of Balabac and Palawan. The frog sits most of the day, camouflaged amongst the leaves waiting for its prey to walk by. Once the prey crosses its path, the frog grabs the prey with its mouth and tries to swallow it whole. The eggs are laid in shallow, slow moving streams.

The frog was in genus Megophrys before being moved in 2021. It was also considered the same species as the Asian Horned Frog (Megophrys montana) before being moved to its own species in 1998.

The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List assesses the Palawan Horned Frog as Near Threatened with Extinction. The main threat to the frogs is the continued destruction of the rain forests they call home by humans Why are people doing this? Well for a lot of reasons. First, they want more room for cities, small farms, palm oil plantations, and mining. Next, the wood is wanted for charcoal making. Finally, the streams that they use for breeding get polluted by these activities. Better protection of these forests are needed to keep the frogs from becoming extinct.

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