This species occurs in Eastern Nicaragua to central Panama on the Caribbean slope. In Panama, this species is found in the western cordilleras and western Atlantic lowlands adjacent to southeastern Costa Rica, Cerro Campana, central Panama, and eastern cordilleras adjacent to central Panama. Its elevation is from sea level to 650m asl. Venezuelan specimens previously assigned to Hyla albomarginata are provisionally assigned to Hyla rufitela, and are known from a few localities along the Caribbean Coast and Maracaibo Lake Basin. They are not mapped here pending finally confirmation of their taxonomic identity.
Habitat and Ecology
It inhabits humid lowland forest and tolerates some disturbance.It can be found in open areas, but this needs to be close to forest (Federico Bolaños pers. comm. 2007). It reproduces in swamps surrounded by trees.
It is locally common in the appropriate habitat.
Major threats include habitat loss by the destruction of natural forests.
It occurs in several protected areas.
This species was previously within the genus Hyla but has recently been moved to the resurrected genus Hypsiboas (Faivovich, et al., 2005).
Solís, F., Ibáñez, R., Chaves, G. & Bolaños, F. 2008. Hypsiboas rufitelus. In: IUCN 2014