The amphibian diversity of selected agroecosystems in the southern Western Ghats, India

Main Article Content

M. S. Syamili
P. O. Nameer


A study was conducted to evaluate amphibian diversity in selected agroecosystems of central Kerala within the southern Western Ghats of India, from January to May 2017.  A total of 10 anurans were recorded from cashew plantation, coconut plantation, homegarden and rubber plantation using a combination of quadrat sampling and visual encounter survey.  We recorded three species endemic to the Western Ghats: Minervarya keralensis, Pseudophilautus wynaadensis and Indosylvirana urbis from these agroecosystems.  Pseudophilautus wynaadensis is a threatened species with Endangered status as per the IUCN Red List.  The present study shows a strong relationship between the types of agroecosystems and abundance of different amphibian species.  This study highlights the potential of agroecosystems within and adjacent to the Western Ghats mountains to act as important abodes to conserve generalist species of amphibians and to provide a suitable habitat for threatened and endemic species.


Article Details

How to Cite
Syamili, M.S. and Nameer, P.O. 2018. The amphibian diversity of selected agroecosystems in the southern Western Ghats, India. Journal of Threatened Taxa. 10, 8 (Jul. 2018), 12027–12034. DOI:


Aravind, N.A., R.U. Shaanker & K.N. Ganeshaiah (2004). Croak, croak, croak: are there more frogs to be discovered in the Western Ghats? Current Science 86(11): 1471–1472.

Baillie, J., C. Hilton-Taylor & S.N. Stuart [eds.]. (2004). 2004 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: A Global Species Assessment. Thanet Press Ltd., Margate, UK, 195p.

Biju, S.D. & F. Bossuyt (2009). Systematics and phylogeny of Philautus Gistel, 1848 (Anura, Rhacophoridae) in the Western Ghats of India, with descriptions of 12 new species. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 155(2): 374–444;

Biju, S.D., G.D. Buddhe, S. Dutta, K. Vasudevan, C. Srinivasulu & S.P. Vijayakumar (2004). Pseudophilautus wynaadensis (errata version published in 2016). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2004. Downloaded on 16 March 2018;

Biju, S.D., S. Garg, S. Mahony, N. Wijayathilaka, G. Senevirathne & M. Meegaskumbura (2014). DNA barcoding, phylogeny and systematics of Golden-backed Frogs (Hylarana, Ranidae) of the Western Ghats-Sri Lanka biodiversity hotspot, with the description of seven new species. Contributions to Zoology 83(4): 269–335.

Bionda, C.D.L., I.E. di Tada & R.C. Lajmanovich (2011). Composition of amphibian assemblages in agroecosystems from the central region of Argentina. Russian Journal of Herpetology 18(2): 93–98.

Das, S. (2015). A checklist of amphibians of the Kerala State. Journal of Threatened Taxa 7(13): 8023–8035;

Eekhout, X. (2010). Sampling amphibians and reptiles, pp. 530–557. In: Manual on Field Recording Techniques and Protocols for All Taxa Biodiversity Inventories. National Focal Point to The Global Taxonomy Initiative, Belgium.

Gururaja, K.V. (2012). Pictorial Guide to Frogs and Toads of the Western Ghats. Gubbi Labs LLP.

Gururaja, K.V., K.P. Dinesh, M.J. Palot, C. Radhakrishnan & T.V. Ramachandra (2007). A new species of Philautus Gistel (Amphibia: Anura: Rhacophoridae) from southern Western Ghats, India. Zootaxa 1621: 1–16.

Gurushankara, H.P., S.V. Krishnamurthy & V. Vasudev (2007). Morphological abnormalities in natural populations of common frogs inhabiting agroecosystems of central Western Ghats. Applied Herpetology 4(1):

Harikrishnan, S., S. Chandramouli & K. Vasudevan (2012). A survey of herpetofauna on Long Island, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, India. Herpetological Bulletin 119: 19.

Kittusamy, G., C. Kandaswamy, N. Kandan & M. Subramanian (2014). Pesticide residues in two frog species in a paddy agroecosystem in Palakkad district, Kerala, India. Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology 93(6): 728–734;

Krishnamurthy, S.V., D. Meenakumari, H.P. Gurushankara & V. Vasudev (2008). Nitrate-induced morphological anomalies in the tadpoles of Nyctibatrachus major and Fejervarya limnocharis (Anura: Ranidae). Turkish Journal of Zoology 32(3): 239–244.

Nair, P.R. (2008). Agroecosystem management in the 21st century: it is time for a paradigm shift. Journal of Tropical Agriculture 46: 1–12.

Nameer, P.O., J. Praveen, A. Bijukumar, M.J. Palot, S. Das & R. Raghavan (2015). A checklist of vertebrates of the Kerala State. Journal of Threatened Taxa 7(13): 7961–7970;

Neckel-Oliveira, S. & C. Gascon (2006). Abundance, body size and movement patterns of a tropical treefrog in continuous and fragmented forests in the Brazilian Amazon. Biological Conservation 128(3): 308–315;

Perfecto, I. & J. Vandermeer (2008). Biodiversity conservation in tropical agroecosystems. Annals of New York Academy of Science 1134(1): 173–200;

Rathod, S. & P. Rathod (2013). CEPF Western Ghats Special Series: Amphibian communities in three different coffee plantation regimes in the Western Ghats, India. Journal of Threatened Taxa 5(9): 4404–4413;

Sanchez, E., S.D. Biju, M.M. Islam, M. Hasan, A. Ohler, M. Vences & A. Kurabayashi (2018). Phylogeny and classification of fejervaryan frogs (Anura: Dicroglossidae). SALAMANDRA 54(2): 109–116.

Wanger, T.C., A. Saro, D.T. Iskandar, B.W. Brook, N.S. Sodhi, Y. Clough & T. Tscharntke (2009). Conservation value of cacao agroforestry for amphibians and reptiles in Southeast Asia: combining correlative models with followâ€up field experiments. Journal of Applied Ecology 46(4): 823–832;

Whiles, M.R., K.R. Lips, C.M. Pringle, S.S. Kilham, R.J. Bixby, R. Brenes, S. Connelly, J.C. Colon-Gaud, M. Hunte-Brown, A.D. Huryn & C. Montgomery (2006). The effects of amphibian population decline on the structure and function of Neotropical stream ecosystems. Frontiers in Ecology and Environment 4(1): 27–34;[0027:TEOAPD]2.0.CO;2

Most read articles by the same author(s)

1 2 > >>