Peltophryne Fitzinger, 1843

Class: Amphibia > Order: Anura > Family: Bufonidae > Genus: Peltophryne
14 species

Chascax Ritgen, 1828, Nova Acta Phys. Med. Acad. Caesar Leopold Carol., Halle, 14: 278. Type species: Bombinator strumosus Merrem, 1820 (= Bufo strumosus Daudin, 1802).

Peltophryne Fitzinger, 1843, Syst. Rept.: 32. Type species: Bufo peltocephalus Tschudi, 1838, by original designation.

PeltaphryneCope, 1862, Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia, 14: 344. Incorrect subsequent spelling of Peltophryne Fitzinger, 1843.

Otaspis Cope, 1869 "1868", Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia, 20: 312. Type species: Peltaphryne empusa Cope, 1862, by monotypy. Synonymy with Bufo by Boulenger, 1882, Cat. Batr. Sal. Coll. Brit. Mus., Ed. 2: 281.

English Names

West Indian Toads (ITIS). 

Caribbean Toads (Hedges, Powell, Henderson, Hanson, and Murphy, 2019, Caribb. Herpetol., 67: 8). 


Greater Antilles (Cuba, Isla de Juventud, Hispaniola, Puerto Rico).


Removed from the synonymy of Bufo by Pregill, 1981, Copeia, 1981: 273–285, where it had been placed by Günther, 1859 "1858", Cat. Batr. Sal. Coll. Brit. Mus.: 281; but replaced in Bufo by Hedges, 1996, in Powell and Henderson (eds.), Contr. W. Indian Herpetol.: 100, and Pramuk, 2000, J. Herpetol., 34: 334. Removed again by 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: 214, who suggested on the basis of molecular evidence that Peltophryne is distantly related to any Neotropical bufonids, instead being more closely related to various Eurasian and African groups. Van Bocxlaer, Loader, Roelants, Biju, Menegon, and Bossuyt, 2010, Science, 327: 679–682, in a densely-sampled molecular analysis suggested that Peltophryne is the sister taxon of Rhaebo. Peltophryne was suggested to be tied to the former Bufo granulosus group (now Rhinella granulosa group) according to Cei, 1972, in Blair (ed.), Evol. Genus Bufo: 87. Graybeal and Cannatella, 1995, Herpetologica, 51: 122, noted that there is no evidence in support of the monophyly of Peltophryne in the sense of including Peltophryne fluviatica, which is plesiomorphic with respect to the others in diagnostic morphological features. Pramuk, 2002, Herpetol. Monogr., 16: 121–151, reported on the phylogenetics of the Bufo peltocephalus group, concurring with the notion of its close relationship to the Bufo granulosus group, although sampling density of outgroups was not great. Pramuk, Hass, and Hedges, 2001, Mol. Phylogenet. Evol., 20: 294–301, provided a phylogenetic study of the Bufo peltocephalus group (= Peltophryne). Pramuk, 2006, Zool. J. Linn. Soc., 146: 407–452, and Pramuk, Robertson, Sites, and Noonan, 2008, Global Ecol. Biogeograph., 17: 72–83, demonstrated that Peltophryne is distantly related to other Neotropical and Nearctic bufonids. Synonymies are available in Schwartz and Thomas, 1975, Spec. Publ. Carnegie Mus. Nat. Hist., 1: 11–13, and in Schwartz, Thomas, and Ober, 1978, Spec. Publ. Carnegie Mus. Nat. Hist., 5: 3. Key to Hispaniolan species available in Henderson, Schwartz, and Incháustegui, 1984, Ser. Monogr. Mus. Nac. Hist. Nat. Santo Domingo: 21. Smith and Chiszar, 2006, Herpetol. Conserv. Biol., 1: 6–8, implied that this taxon should be considered a subgenus of Bufo; see comment under Bufonidae. Pramuk, Robertson, Sites, and Noonan, 2008, Global Ecol. Biogeograph., 17: 72–83, discussed the phylogenetic position of Peltophryne. Van Bocxlaer, Biju, Loader, and Bossuyt, 2009, BMC Evol. Biol., 9 (e131): 1–10, suggested a novel set of relationships of New World taxa, but did not include examplars of this taxon. Pyron and Wiens, 2011, Mol. Phylogenet. Evol., 61: 543–583, confirmed the monophyly of this taxon (although it is difficult to see because the authors explicitly adopted a non-monophyletic and out-dated taxonomy), provided a tree of their exemplar species and suggested that Peltophryne sits deeply within the bufonid tree. Alonso, Crawford, and Bermingham, 2012, J. Biogeograph., 39: 434–451, provided a molecular tree and biogeography of the Cuban members of this taxon, suggesting a relationship of (Peltophryne taladai + (Peltophryne empusa + (Peltophryne peltocephala + Peltophryne florentinoi))) + ((Peltophryne cataulaciceps + Peltophryne longinasus) + Peltophryne gundlachi).. Fouquette and Dubois, 2014, Checklist N.A. Amph. Rept.: 290, considered Peltophryne as subgenus of Bufo, cherry-picking their citation to literature (excluding any reference to  Van Bocxlaer, Biju, Loader, and Bossuyt, 2009, BMC Evol. Biol., 9 (e131): 1–10, Van Bocxlaer, Loader, Roelants, Biju, Menegon, and Bossuyt, 2010, Science, 327: 679–682, or Pyron and Wiens, 2011, Mol. Phylogenet. Evol., 61: 543–583, which provided results not congruent with the story that Fouquette and Dubois wanted to tell) to avoid recognizing that treating this genus as a subgenus of Bufo also requires under current understanding of phylogeny all Old-World bufonids, such as SabahphrynusNectophryne, and Ansonia to be treated as subgenera of Bufo as well. Ali and Hedges, 2021, J. Biogeograph., 48: 2699–2707, discussed Antillean biogeography employing Peltophryne as one of the exemplars. del Castillo Domínguez and Bosch, 2023, Biol. J. Linn. Soc., 140: 471–483, discussed character displacement in release calls among Cuban Peltophryne species. 

Contained taxa (14 sp.):

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