This species' main range is from extreme southeastern Nigeria eastward towards northeastern Democratic Republic of Congo. There are records from southwestern and southern Cameroon, mainland Equatorial Guinea, northern Congo, southwestern Central African Republic and central Gabon. In West Africa, there are isolated records from southern Ghana, southwestern Côte d’Ivoire, Liberia and southern Guinea. It does not appear to have been recorded from Sierra Leone, but it is likely to occur in this country. It is generally a low-altitude species.
Habitat and Ecology
In Central Africa, it lives mainly in secondary forest, but also in tall primary forest, as well dense brush and cocoa plantations. In West Africa, it is restricted to primary forest along the banks of larger rivers. It breeds in relatively calm water in streams.
It is generally uncommon through most of its range. It is very rare in West Africa.
Although it is tolerant of some habitat modification in central Africa, it is probably affected to some extent by forest loss, especially when the habitat becomes very open. In the past it has been harvested for the pet trade, and this might have impacted some populations, and so low-level illegal trade might continue. The West African form is considered to be possibly threatened (Hillers and Rödel 2007), given that in Upper Guinea it is found exclusively in large, healthy forests, never in smaller or degraded forests, and large pristine forests are very rare and threatened in Upper Guinea due to logging, small-holder agriculture and more and more mining activities [e.g. iron ore in Guinea] (A. Hillers pers. comm. 2009).
It is included in Appendix I of CITES. It occurs in the Oban Hills National Park in Nigeria, the Korup National Park in Cameroon, the Taï National Park in Côte d’Ivoire, the Massif du Ziama Biosphere Reserve in Guinea, the Monte Alen National Park in Equatorial Guinea, in North Lorma National Forest in Liberia, and almost certainly in several other protected areas. The Upper Guinea population requires further taxonomic studies (A. Hillers pers. comm. 2009).
This form is probably a complex of three species (M.-O. Rödel pers. comm.). The population in the Upper Guinea forest block is suspected to be a different species from that in Central Africa. Amietophrynus chevalieri may not be a synonym of Amietophrynus superciliaris, but could be the species that occurs in the Upper Guinea forest (A. Hillers pers. comm. 2009).
Mills Tandy, Jean-Louis Amiet, Mark-Oliver Rödel, Annika Hillers 2009. Amietophrynus superciliaris. In: IUCN 2014