Phantasmal poison frog

Phantasmal poison frog

Phantasmal poison frog, Phantasmal poison-arrow frog

Epipedobates tricolor

The phantasmal poison frog or phantasmal poison-arrow frog (Epipedobates tricolor ) is a species of poison dart frog. It is endemic to Ecuador and known from the Andean slopes of the central Ecuador in Bolívar Province. They have radiant colors. This species is endangered, and there are only a few locations in the wild where they are known to live.


The phantasmal poison frog has a snout-to-vent length of about 22.6 mm (0.9 in). It has a wide head and truncated snout and the skin is smooth. The first finger is longer than the second, and all the digits are partially webbed. The dorsal surface is usually green or yellow and there are longitudinal stripes.



Biogeographical realms

The phantasmal poison frog is known only from a number of locations in central Ecuador on the Andean slopes of Bolívar Province, at heights of between 319 and 1,769 m (1,047 and 5,804 ft) above sea level. Its natural habitat is the leaf litter on the floor of the tropical forest, especially near streams, and in wetlands.

Habits and Lifestyle

The species inhabits the Chocoan tropical and subtropical rain forest. Habitats include deforested areas as well as natural forests. They are found in banana and cacao plantations, and pastures near streams. The males carry the tadpoles to sites with running water. The frogs secrete epibatidine, a chemical of pharmacological interest.

Show More

Phantasmal poison frogs live in a similar areas to Epipedobates machalilla yet the two to occupy different environmental niches, and their population distribution is small and overlaps with that of E. machalilla. Genetic analysis places phantasmal poison frog clades within E. machalilla and suggests that the phantasmal poison frog diverged recently via either peripheral speciation or high phenotypic divergence.

Show Less
Seasonal behavior

Diet and Nutrition


Population number

The phantasmal poison frog is listed as "vulnerable" by the IUCN. This is because of its limited range, estimated to be less than 5,000 square kilometres (1,900 sq mi) and the apparent decline in numbers of this species.


1. Phantasmal poison frog Wikipedia article -
2. Phantasmal poison frog on The IUCN Red List site -

More Fascinating Animals to Learn About