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Red-crowned Toadlet

Pseudophryne australis

Red-crowned Toadlet
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Red-crowned Toadlet • Pseudophryne australis
The Red-crowned Toadlet is a small frog (not a toad, contrary to its name) that is between 20 and 30 mm long, and lives in the sandstone cliffs that surround Sydney. It has a dark brown to black base colour (sometimes flecked with red), has a distinctive red or orange “T” shape on its head, and a stripe of the same colour on its back.

Their call is a “creaky door” sort of sound, often with many following each other, as these frogs live in colonies and answer the other toadlets calls.

Breeding takes place in damp leaf litter, near streams that only flow after heavy rain. They lay between 15 and 30 eggs in a clutch. When a heavy rain does come, the eggs are washed into the puddles that form. They will metamorphose in between one and four months.

Belonging to the Family Myobatrachidae, Red-crowned Toadlets are a threatened species, mainly as a result of human activity. Here are two examples:

  • Pollution
    The streams they breed in are often runoff from roadsides. This often is polluted water, and it can harm or even kill them.
  • Housing
    This can affect them, especially if houses are built on the slope directly below an escarpment, as this is where the frogs mainly live.

We can help protect this rare frog by not littering or removing bush-rocks, as this is shelter for them, as well as for the small insects they eat.

Interesting Facts!
These frogs are called “toadlets” because they crawl rather than hop, and also are “warty” like true toads. There are no true toads native to Australia.

Red-crowned Toadlet • Images

Images from the Blue Mountains, NSW
Red-crowned Toadlet (Pseudophryne australis) - Photos: Katrina ฉ 2004

Red-crowned Toadlet (Pseudophryne australis) - Photos: Katrina ฉ 2004

Red-crowned Toadlet (Pseudophryne australis) - Photos: Katrina ฉ 2004

Scientific Classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Amphibia
Order: Anura
Family: Myobatrachidae
Genus: Pseudophryne
Species: P australis

Other links - Red-crowned Toadlet (Pseudophryne australis)

Ambling Amphibians • Wandering Wildlife Website • National Parks Association of NSW
• Some info on the Red-crowned toalet.
Wildlife of Sydney • Some info from the Red-crowned Toadlet Fact File.
The Frog and Tadpole Study Group of NSW Inc
• Some info from the FATS Group on the Red-crowned Toadlet.
Frogs of Sydney Harbour • Some info about the Ground Frogs, Family Mhobatrachidae.
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