Morphs of E. Tricolor
The following is from Epipedobates tricolor by Volker Ennenbach
and Stacy Surla ADG Newsletter # 9 May - June 1993
Used with the permission of the ADG.
Photograph by Gregory J. Sihler of ARIZONA DENDROBATE
Santa Isabel - This is the largest of the E. tricolor
variations found. The habitat in which the frog is found is around
grasses or among bush and scrub around little rivers and springs at an
elevation of about 1,700 m in the Rio Giron Valley near Santa Isabel.
This variety has a ground color varying from orange-red to reddish-brown.
The medial stripe is a creamy yellow-white and is always wide enough to
be wider than the lighter white interstices between the stripes of the
ground color. Most commonly the ground color is reduced to very thin
stripes on the lower part of the dorsum, which gives the frogs a nearly
solid yellow-white appearance. The ventrum is reddish brown to brown
with light blues spots and markings.
Giron Valley - This variation occurs in very moist secondary
growth at low elevation about 25 miles west of Santa Isabel in the Giron
Valley. It is a medium-sized variety ranging from about 22 to 24
mm. Its ground color is deep, bright red with narrow stripes which
are usually mint-green, but can range to whitish-blue. The medial
stripe is often interrupted and appears as a line of spots.
Balsas - This is the smallest variety of true E. tricolor recognized
here. It occurs in secondary and primary cloud forests at high elevations
at Balsas in the Rio Poyango drainage. It has a dark brown (chocolate
brown) ground color with relatively thin green dorsolateral and medial
Moraspunga - This broadly striped variation occurs in secondary
and primary cloud forests at high elevations near Moraspunga in the Rio
Zapotal drainage. The lines are broad, solid and grass green in color
while the background is a dark brown color. The ventrum has a "clown
pattern" of alternating white and brown spots.
Lower Rio Giron - This form occurs in very moist secondary growth
at low elevations in the Rio Giron Valley and cannot with certainty be
assigned to E. tricolor as it may be E. anthonyi, but frankly
we have been unable to distinguish these two species. The population
was not included in the size range above, as it is smaller than normal, ranging
in length from about 16 to 18 mm, they are reddish brown in ground color
with light blue stripes or dots and orange flash marks.