Phrynobatrachus minutus (Boulenger, 1895)

Class: Amphibia > Order: Anura > Family: Phrynobatrachidae > Genus: Phrynobatrachus > Species: Phrynobatrachus minutus

Arthroleptis minutus Boulenger, 1895, Proc. Zool. Soc. London, 1895: 539. Holotype: BMNH 1947.2.30.51 (formerly, according to Grandison, 1985, in Frost (ed.), Amph. Species World: 448. Type locality: "Durro" (= Duro), Ethiopia.

Phrynobatrachus (Pararthroleptis) minutusLaurent, 1941, Rev. Zool. Bot. Afr., 34: 205.

Phrynobatrachus minutusLaurent, 1954, Publ. Cult. Companhia Diamantes Angola, 23: 74; Guibé and Lamotte, 1958, Bull. Mus. Natl. Hist. Nat. Paris, Ser. 2, 30: 257; Laurent, 1972, Explor. Parc Natl. Virunga, Ser. 2, 22: 114.

English Names

Tiny River Frog (Frank and Ramus, 1995, Compl. Guide Scient. Common Names Amph. Rept. World: 104).

Ethiopian Dwarf Puddle Frog (Largen and Spawls, 2010, Amph. Rept. Ethiopia Eritrea: 207).

Dwarf Puddle Frog (Channing and Rödel, 2019, Field Guide Frogs & Other Amph. Afr.: 310).


Central plateau of Ethiopia west of the rift at elevations of 800–2800 m. See comments for discussion of records east of the Rift Valley. 

Geographic Occurrence

Natural Resident: Ethiopia

Endemic: Ethiopia


Formerly considered a synonym of Phrynobatrachus parvulus by Schmidt and Inger, 1959, Explor. Parc Natl. Upemba, Miss. G.F. de Witte, 56: 160. Lanza, 1990, Biogeographia, 14: 410, doubted the Somalia record by Loveridge, 1957, Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool., 117: 349, repeated by Grandison, 1985, in Frost (ed.), Amph. Species World: 448. Largen, 2001, Tropical Zool., 14: 287–306, reported on geographic variation and distribution and provided comparisons with Phrynobatrachus keniensis, Phrynobatrachus anotis, Phrynobatrachus bequaerti, Phrynobatrachus parvulus, Phrynobatrachus mababiensis, Phrynobatrachus scapularis, Phrynobatrachus rouxi, Phrynobatrachus albifer, Phrynobatrachus scheffleri, and Phrynobatrachus cryptotis. Lanza, 1990, Biogeographia, 14: 410, noted but doubted the Somalia record. Frétey, 2008, Alytes, 25: 99–172, summarized the literature. See comment under Phrynobatrachus scheffleri. In species group B of Zimkus, Rödel, and Hillers, 2010, Mol. Phylogenet. Evol., 55: 883–900. See account and map for Ethiopia by Largen and Spawls, 2010, Amph. Rept. Ethiopia Eritrea: 207. Marques, Ceríaco, Blackburn, and Bauer, 2018, Proc. California Acad. Sci., Ser. 4, 65 (Suppl. II): 138–139, provided a map of this nominal species for Angola and brief discussion of the literature, regarding all of these records as misidentifications. Channing and Rödel, 2019, Field Guide Frogs & Other Amph. Afr.: 310–311, provided a brief account, photograph, and range map. In the Phrynobatrachus calcaratus group of Goutte, Reyes-Velasco, and Boissinot, 2019, ZooKeys, 824: 53–70. Tiutenko and Zinenko, 2020, Salamandra, 56: 135–147, commented on the misidentification of specimens of Phrynobatrachus inexpectatus and Phrynobatrachus cf. natalensis east of the Rift in the Bale Mountain region and implied that Phrynobatrachus minutus does not occur east of the Rift Valley. Kassie Teme, Bekele Simegn, and Afework Bogale, 2022, Global Ecol. Conserv., 38 (e02211): 1–12, reported the species from Keffa Zone, southwestern Ethiopia, and discussed habitat. 

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