This Andean species occurs in the Cordillera de Merida in the states of Barinas, Merida and Tachira, and from Sierra de Perijá in Zulia State, Venezuela, at 1,600-3,000m asl. It is also known from the eastern slopes of Cordillera Oriental in Colombia in the department of Norte de Santander, at 1,050m asl. Records from Sierra del Turimiquire in Sucre and Monagas states are in error.
Habitat and Ecology
It lives in cloud forests, and is able to tolerate minor habitat disturbance. It is usually found along streams, where it breeds.
Formerly an abundant species, there are few recent records, in part due to lack of survey efforts in its range. However, some populations, such as those north of the city of Mérida on Monte Zerpa, Venezuela, have experienced declines in suitable habitat (E. La Marca pers. obs.). However, in 2001 it was reportedly found without difficulty in Venezuela in brooks of cloud forest (Barrio Amorós 2001).
The main threat is deforestation, especially the conversion of cloud forests to pasture lands. However, declines that have taken place in suitable habitat suggest another threatening process might be operating, possibly chytridiomycosis.
It occurs in the Sierra Nevada and Sierra de la Culata National Parks in Venezuela, and probably also occurs in other protected areas. Close population monitoring of this species is required, particularly if chytrid is shown to be a genuine threat.
This species was previously included in the genus Hyla but has recently been moved to the resurrected genus Hyloscirtus (Faivovich et al. 2005). It is possibly confused with Hyloscirtus bogotensis.
Enrique La Marca, Juan Elías García-Pérez 2004. Hyloscirtus platydactylus. In: IUCN 2014