This species occurs in Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil, Uruguay (Artigas, Cerro Largo, Paysandú, Rocha, Salto, Tacuarambó, Treinta y Tres Departments), northern Argentina (Corrientes, Misiones, Santa Fé, and Entre Rios Provinces), and southern Paraguay at 0-1,200m asl.
Habitat and Ecology
It occurs in grasslands. It reproduces explosively in temporary pools and agricultural ditches. It occurs in substantially disturbed habitats, but is not found in areas with intensive cattle activities (perhaps due to soil compaction inhibiting the formation of temporary ponds; R. Maneyro, pers. comm. 2008).
It is uncommon and the population is probably stable in Brazil. It is rare in Paraguay. In Argentina and Uruguay, it is abundant during reproductive bouts.
It is threatened in Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay by pine and Eucalyptus plantations and drainage of wetlands. It is possibly threatened in the future by the pet trade.
It apparently does not occur in any large protected areas, although it occurs in several small regional and private reserves in Argentina.
This species was elevated to species level from M. stelzneri atroluteus by Klappenbach and Langone (1992). However, the external morphology and advertisement calls are almost indistinguishable between M. atroluteus and M. montevidensis (Kwet et al., 2005).
Axel Kwet, Lucy Aquino, Jose Langone, Diego Baldo, Raúl Maneyro 2010. Melanophryniscus atroluteus. In: IUCN 2014