Melanophryniscus Gallardo, 1961

Class: Amphibia > Order: Anura > Family: Bufonidae > Genus: Melanophryniscus
31 species

Melanophryniscus Gallardo, 1961, Neotropica, 7: 72; also Gallardo, 1961, 1° Reunion Trab. Comun. Cienc. Nat. Geograf., Univ. Nac. Litoral, Santa Fe, Argentina: 207. Type species: Phryniscus stelzneri Weyenbergh, 1875, by monotypy.

English Names

South American Redbelly Toads (Frank and Ramus, 1995, Compl. Guide Scient. Common Names Amph. Rept. World: 44).


Argentina (northern half including Misiones, Salta, and Jujuy); interandean valleys of southern Bolivia; Brazil (coastal lowlands of southern Brazil and Rio Grande do Sul); Paraguay; Uruguay.


Frost, Grant, Faivovich, Bain, Haas, Haddad, de Sá, Channing, Wilkinson, Donnellan, Raxworthy, Campbell, Blotto, Moler, Drewes, Nussbaum, Lynch, Green, and Wheeler, 2006, Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist., 297: 129, Van Bocxlaer, Biju, Loader, and Bossuyt, 2009, BMC Evol. Biol., 9 (e131): 1–10, and Van Bocxlaer, Loader, Roelants, Biju, Menegon, and Bossuyt, 2010, Science, 327: 679–682, placed Melanophryniscus as the sister taxon of remaining bufonids (although they did not study Truebella), and this was corroborated by Van Bocxlaer, Loader, Roelants, Biju, Menegon, and Bossuyt, 2010, Science, 327: 679–682, and Portik and Papenfuss, 2015, BMC Evol. Biol., 15 (152): 1–19. McDiarmid, 1971, Sci. Bull. Nat. Hist. Mus. Los Angeles Co., 12: 49 (and Graybeal, 1997, Zool. J. Linn. Soc., 119: 297–338), considered Melanophryniscus to be most closely related to Dendrophryniscus. Cannatella, 1986, Herpetologica, 42: 197–205, regarded it as the sister taxon of Dendrophryniscus plus Oreophrynella. Prigioni and Langone, 1987 "1986", Comun. Zool. Mus. Hist. Nat. Montevideo, 11: 1–11, supplied a key to the Melanophryniscus tumifrons group. Graybeal and Cannatella, 1995, Herpetologica, 51: 121, presented evidence supporting the monophyly of this taxon. Céspedez and Alvarez, 2000 "1999", FACENA, 15: 57–67, provided a key to the species of the Melanophryniscus stelzneri group. Larson, de Sá, and Arrieta, 2003, Acta Zool., Stockholm, 84: 145–154, discussed larval morphology in light of phylogenetic comparisons with other taxa. Cruz and Caramaschi, 2003, Bol. Mus. Nac., Rio de Janeiro, N.S., Zool., 500: 1–11, discussed the Melanophryniscus stelzneri group and defined the three species groups: Melanophryniscus stelzneri group (Melanophryniscus atroluteus, Melanophryniscus cupreuscapularis, Melanophryniscus dorsalis, Melanophryniscus fulvoguttatus, Melanophryniscus klappenbachi, Melanophryniscus montevidensis, Melanophryniscus rubriventris, Melanophryniscus stelzneri); Melanophryniscus tumifrons group (Melanophryniscus cambaraensis, Melanophryniscus devincenzii, Melanophryniscus macogranulosus, Melanophryniscus orejasmirandai, Melanophryniscus pachyrhynus, Melanophryniscus simplex, Melanophryniscus spectabilis, and Melanophryniscus tumifrons); Melanophryniscus moreirae group (Melanophryniscus moreirae). Caramaschi and Cruz, 2002, Arq. Mus. Nac., Rio de Janeiro, 60: 303–314, discussed the Melanophryniscus tumifrons group. Céspedez and Motte, 2001, Bol. Asoc. Herpetol. Esp., 12: 71–76, discussed the distribution of species in Argentina and Paraguay. Kwet, Maneyro, Zillikens, and Mebs, 2005, Salamandra, 41: 3–20, discussed the Melanophryniscus stelzneri group and provided a key. Céspedez and Motte, 2007, FACENA, 23: 31–42, provided a key to the species of Paraguay. Bidau, Martí, and Baldo, 2011, J. Herpetol., 45: 66–74, reported on body size morphometrics. Pyron and Wiens, 2011, Mol. Phylogenet. Evol., 61: 543–583, confirmed the monophyly of this taxon, its placement as the sister taxon of remaining bufonids, and provided a tree of exemplar species. Baldo, Cotichelli, Pereyra, Borteiro, Netto, Kolenc, Brusquetti, and Bidau, 2012, J. Herpetol., 46: 25–32, discussed karyology of the genus, which confirmed the Melanophryniscus tumifrons group and suggested that phylogeny within the taxon requires further evaluation. Baldo, Vera Candioti, Haad, Kolenc, Borteiro, Pereyra, Zank, Colombo, Bornschein, Sisa, Brusquetti, Conte, Nogueira-Costa, Almeida-Santos, and Pie, 2014, Biol. J. Linn. Soc., 112: 417–441, reported on comparative larval morphology of 23 of the species. Firkowski, Bornschein, Ribeiro, and Pie, 2016, Mol. Phylogenet. Evol., 100: 345–360, reported on species delimitation, and Pie, Faircloth, Ribeiro, Bornschein, and McCormack, 2018, Biol. J. Linn. Soc., 125: 72–82, reported on phylogenetics and biogeography of the species in the southern Atlantic forest of Brazil.  Ferraro, Blotto, Baldo, Barrasso, Barrionuevo, Basso, Cardozo, Cotichelli, Faivovich, Pereyra, and Lavilla, 2018, in Vaira, Akmentins, and Lavilla (eds.), Cuad. Herpetol., 32 (Supl. 1): 17–19, noted that the taxonomic status of the species in Argentina remained problematic. Zank, Becker, Abadie, Baldo, and Maneyro, 2014, PLoS One, E 9(4: e94625): 1–11, provided modeled distribution maps for the species. under climate change. Deforel, Duport-Bru, Rosset, Baldo, and Vera Candioti, 2021, Herpetol. Monogr., 35: 1–27, reported on comparative osteology of species within the genus (and with respect to other basal bufonids) and discussed potential synapomorphies of the genus and species groups. 

Contained taxa (31 sp.):

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