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Gastrotheca cornuta Boulenger 1898

Gastrotheca cornuta
Gastrotheca cornuta

Common name

Horned Marsupial Frog



Species description based on Savage (2002). A large treefrog (males to 81 mm, females to 77 mm). Females have a pouch on the dorsum in which they brood their young.

Gastrotheca cornuta Adult 1 Gastrotheca cornuta Adult 2


Dorsal coloration varies from light to dark brown. Barring is present along the upper lip and on the upper surfaces of the arms and legs. Individuals can change color and are usually lighter during the day. The dorsal surface is smooth, except for a number of dark ridges that occur in transverse rows down the back.

Gastrotheca cornuta Dorsal 1


The ventral surface is light brown, except for the throat, which is dark. In some individuals, the ventral surface has a pinkish cast.

Concealed surfaces

The rear surfaces of the thighs are dark brown.

Distinguishing characteristics

The horn-shaped points above the eyes are unique to this species.

Gastrotheca cornuta Distinguishing characteristics 1


The eye is dark brown at the edges, lightening to yellow or green near the center.

Life history

Breeding season

Males call from high in trees (Duellman 1983, Savage 2002).


Eggs are large, and clutch sizes are small (less than 10 eggs, Duellman 1983, Wassersug and Duellman 1984).

Metamorph juvenile

Eggs develop directly into small froglets (Duellman 1983, Wassersug and Duellman 1984).

Gastrotheca cornuta Metamorph juvenile 1 Gastrotheca cornuta Metamorph juvenile 2 Gastrotheca cornuta Metamorph juvenile 3 Gastrotheca cornuta Metamorph juvenile 4

Ecology behavior and evolution


Gastrotheca cornuta generally lives high in the canopy (Savage 2002).


A loud "bop" (Savage 2002).

Taxonomy and systematics



Boulenger 1898


Gastrotheca ceratophrys, Gastrotheca cornutum, Hyla ceratophrys, Nototrema cornutum

Type locality

Cachabé (Ecuador)

Habitat and distribution


Lowland and premontane forest to about 1000 m.


Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Panama


Iucn red list status


Population trend



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Boulenger, GA. 1898. An account of the reptiles and batrachians collected by Mr. W.F.H. Rosenberg in western Ecuador. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1898: 107-126.

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Duellman, WE. 1970. The hylid frogs of Middle America. 2 volumes. Monograph. Museum of Natural History, University of Kansas : 1-753.

Duellman, WE. 1983. A new species of marsupial frog (Hylidae: Gastrotheca) from Colombia and Ecuador. Copeia 1983: 868-874.

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