This species is known only from tiny areas on the Pacific coast of Colombia on the Río Saija drainage, in Cauca Department, occurring up to 200m asl.
Habitat and Ecology
It lives on the ground in humid forests, and is only known from primary forest. It is not known whether or not it can adapt to secondary habitats. The eggs are laid on the ground and the males transport the larvae to permanent pools.
It is extremely common in its tiny range.
The major threats are deforestation for agricultural development, the planting of illegal crops, logging, and human settlement, and pollution resulting from the spraying of illegal crops. It is very occasionally reported in international trade in small numbers.
It does not occur in any protected areas, and the protection of part of this species' lowland forest habitat is recommended. Management practices that could allow a commercial, sustainable harvest of this species should be investigated. Decree INDERENA No. 39 of 9 July, 1985, forbids the collection of Phyllobates spp. from the wild in Colombia for breeding (or other) purposes. It is listed on CITES Appendix II.
Wilmar Bolívar, Stefan Lötters 2004. Phyllobates terribilis. In: IUCN 2014