Ranitomeya variabilis (Zimmermann and Zimmermann, 1988)

Class: Amphibia > Order: Anura > Superfamily: Dendrobatoidea > Family: Dendrobatidae > Subfamily: Dendrobatinae > Genus: Ranitomeya > Species: Ranitomeya variabilis

Dendrobates variabilis Zimmermann and Zimmermann, 1988, Salamandra, 24: 132. Holotype: SMNS 7054, by original designation. Type locality: "Departamento San Martin, Peru"; restricted to "Km 27 of the road from Tarapoto to Yurimaguas", Peru, by Henle, 1992, Bonn. Zool. Beitr., 43: 79-129.

Ranitomeya variabilisGrant, Frost, Caldwell, Gagliardo, Haddad, Kok, Means, Noonan, Schargel, and Wheeler, 2006, Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist., 299: 171.

English Names

Zimmermann's Poison Frog (Walls, 1994, Jewels of the Rainforest: 24).


Amazonian rainforests of western Brazil (Amazonas), Colombia (Amazonas, Caquetá, Putumayo [tentative], Vaupés), Ecuador (Morona-Santiago, Napo, Orellana, Pastaza, Sucumbíos) and Peru (Amazonas, Loreto, San Martín, Ucayali); also in French Guiana and Amapá, Brazil. 

Geographic Occurrence

Natural Resident: Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Peru


Removed from the synonymy of Ranitomeya ventrimaculata (as Dendrobates) by Schulte, 1999, Pfeilgiftfrösche: 39, and Symula, Schulte, and Summers, 2001, Proc. R. Soc. London, Ser. B, Biol. Sci., 268: 2415-2421, where it had been placed by Caldwell and Myers, 1990, Am. Mus. Novit., 2988: 1. Schulte, 1999, Pfeilgiftfrösche: 39-49, provided an account. Lötters, Jungfer, Henkel, and Schmidt, 2007, Poison Frogs: 500-503, provided an account and placed this species in their Ranitomeya ventrimaculata group. In the Ranitomeya variabilis species group of Brown, Twomey, Amézquita, Souza, Caldwell, Lötters, von May, Melo-Sampaio, Mejía-Vargas, Pérez-Peña, Pepper, Poelman, Sanchez-Rodriguez, and Summers, 2011, Zootaxa, 3083: 78, and who provided an account on page 85-89. Simões, Rojas-Runjaic, Gagliardi-Urrutia, and Castroviejo-Fisher, 2019, Herpetol. Notes, 12: 211–219, provided a record for Brazil (Estação Ecológica Juami-Japurá, municipality of Japurá, Amazonas, Brazil) and described the advertisement call. Metcalf, Marsh, Torres Pacaya, Graham, and Gunnels, 2020, Herpetol. Notes, 13: 753–767, reported the species from the Santa Cruz Forest Reserve, Loreto, northeastern Peru. Muell, Chávez, Prates, Guillory, Kahn, Twomey, Rodrigues, and Brown, 2022, Mol. Phylogenet. Evol., 168 (107389): 1–10, noted that previous records of Ranitomeya amazonica from French Guiana and adjacent Amapá, Brazil, are referrable to Ranitomeya variabilisTaucce, Costa-Campos, Carvalho, and Michalski, 2022, Eur. J. Taxon., 836: 96–130, reported on distribution, literature, and conservation status for Amapá, Brazil. Regnet, Rech, Rödder, and Solé, 2023, ZooKeys, 1172: 131–153, reported on embryonic and larval development in captivity. Regnet, Lukas, Rödder, Wipfler, and Solé, 2023, Zoomorphology, 142: 477–486, reported on tadpole external and internal morphology. 

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