This species is known only from Rio de Janeiro State in coastal Brazil. It occurs at very low elevations, from sea level up to only about 50m asl.
Habitat and Ecology
This species lives underground then emerges to breed around standing waterbodies in restinga (shrubland) vegetation and forest. It breeds in shallow temporary rain pools. It is an explosive breeder. It can also occur in urban gardens where rain puddles develop.
It is a very common species.
Habitat loss due to infrastructure development is a threat, although it is able to live in gardens where there are rain pools. It is sometimes found in the international pet trade but at levels that do not currently constitute a major threat.
The range of the species includes several protected areas. More research into the species' Extent of Occurrence is needed.
This species has often been considered a subspecies of Rhinella granulosa (e.g. Gallardo (1965)). Céspedez (2000) separated R. pygmaea into two species: R. pygmaea of coastal Brazil and R. bergi in the interior of the continent.
Sergio Potsch de Carvalho-e-Silva, Ana Maria Telles 2004. Rhinella pygmaea. In: IUCN 2014