AmphibiaWeb - Litoria lodesdema


(Translations may not be accurate.)

Litoria lodesdema Menzies, Richards & Tyler, 2008
family: Hylidae
subfamily: Pelodryadinae
genus: Litoria
Species Description: Menzies JI Richards SJ Tyler MJ 2008 Systematics of the Australo- Papuan tree frogs known as Litoria bicolor (Anura: Hylidae) in the Papuan region. Australian Journal of Zoology 56: 257-280.
Taxonomic Notes: Following the Australian Society of Herpetology, AmphibiaWeb uses Litoria instead of Ranoidea or Dryopsophus (contrary to Dubois and Fretey 2016 and Duellman et al 2016).
Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN Red List Status Account Least Concern (LC)
National Status None
Regional Status None
Access Conservation Needs Assessment Report .



View distribution map in BerkeleyMapper.


Diagnosis: A small species of the Litoria bicolor complex, with an average male SVL of 22 mm. Morphologically most similar to L. chloristona but differs in color (generally yellowish green dorsum for L. lodesdema vs. bright green dorsum with bronze flanks for L. chloristona) and vocalization, as well as by having a larger tympanic ratio (mean TY/HB of 0.06 for L. lodesdema vs. 0.05 in L. viranula and wider narial placement (mean EN/IN of 0.98 for L. lodesdema vs. 1.07 for L. viranula). Can be distinguished from L. viranula by the combination of smaller body size (average male SVL 22.0 mm in L. lodesdema vs. 23.8 mm in L. viranula), smaller tympanic ratio (average TY/HB of 0.06 in L. lodesdema vs. 0.07 in L. viranula), and narrower internarial region (average EN/IN of 1.07 in L. lodesdema vs. 1.01 in L. viranula). Differs from L. bibonius (which only occurs on Normanby Island and Goodenough Island, in the d'Entrecasteaux Islands) by the combination of slightly shorter legs (TL/HB of 0.53 in L. lodesdema vs. 0.58 in L. bibonius) and a slightly narrower head (HL/HW of 1.08 in L. lodesdema vs. 1.00 in L. bibonius) (Menzies et al. 2008).

Description: Adult males measure 19.3-23.8 mm SVL. Head is about the same in width and length. Eyes large. Tympanum moderate-sized and is visible except for upper margin, which is obscured by a slight postorbital fold. Snout obtusely pointed in dorsal view; rounded, projecting in profile view. Rounded canthus rostralis and a slightly concave loreal region. Nares dorsolateral but visible in dorsal view. Lacking vomerine teeth. The outer fingers are half webbed and the other fingers are basally webbed. Toes are fully webbed except for Toe IV. Long legs. Granular dorsal skin and ventral skin. (Menzies et al. 2008).

In life, individuals from Popondetta have a yellowish-green dorsum with an indistinct bronze median stripe. Some specimens have faint yellow postorbital stripes which fade towards the groin. Hidden surfaces of the thighs are light orange with heavy black flecking on the dorsal edge. White venter. Bronze iris. Males with light yellow throat.

Individuals from Madang generally have a yellow-green to bright green dorsum, though one specimen was duller and brownish. Indistinct yellowish postorbital stripe. Creamy colored upper lip. Bronze lateral stripe extends from the snout tip to midbody and separates the greenish dorsal coloration from the white ventral coloration. Bronze tympanum. Hidden surfaces of thighs have sparse to moderate blue-black flecking. Gold iris. Males have yellow throat (Menzies et al. 2008).

Distribution and Habitat

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Papua New Guinea


View distribution map in BerkeleyMapper.
Endemic to Papua New Guinea. Found in the lowlands of northern New Guinea, from Popondetta west to at least Nagada Harbor (near Madang). Distribution may extend westward as far as Aitape but this needs to be confirmed with fresh material, as Aitape specimens were poorly preserved (Menzies et al. 2008).

Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
Near Popondetta (at the type locality), individuals were found breeding in a shallow, grassy roadside marsh. In Madang, males called from bushes around the edges of a heavily shaded swamp in a highly degraded forest next to banana plantations. One recorded call sounded like a series of short calls but analysis showed that the series was simply a long call with well-separated notes (call duration of 0.540 seconds with 12 distinct notes that accelerated in rate, each with 3-5 pulses). Another series had two short notes followed by a long call that was not subdivided and did not change pulse rate (Menzies et al. 2008).

The species' name is derived from the expression "loca demissa septentrionalis domicilium habemus" which translates to "in the lowlands of the north we have our home" (Menzies et al. 2008).

Sample size was small for the seven different geographical populations analyzed, and call recordings were not optimal; although these populations are currently grouped into a single species, future analysis may reveal that they comprise more than one species (Menzies et al. 2008).


Menzies, J. I., Richards, S. J. and Tyler, M. J. (2008). ''Systematics of the Australo-Papuan tree frogs known as Litoria bicolor (Anura : Hylidae) in the Papuan region.'' Australian Journal of Zoology, 56, 257-280.

Originally submitted by: Stephanie Ung (first posted 2009-11-16)
Edited by: Kellie Whittaker (2010-05-13)

Species Account Citation: AmphibiaWeb 2010 Litoria lodesdema <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed Dec 5, 2023.

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Citation: AmphibiaWeb. 2023. <> University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA. Accessed 5 Dec 2023.

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