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Biosphere, Fauna and Flora in Cuba Naturaleza
Cuba Naturaleza Biodiversity

Cuban Robber Frog (Eleutherodactylus cubanus) is a tiny frog endemic to Cuba

Cuban Robber Frog (Eleutherodactylus cubanus)
Scientific name: Eleutherodactylus cubanus
Common name (english): Cuban Robber Frog
Common name (spanish): Ranita Cubana

The Cuban Robber Frog (Eleutherodactylus cubanus) is a tiny frog endemic to Cuba, measuring only 14 mm in adult females, with the males being smaller. The dorsum is slightly warty, and the venter is smooth. The digits and digital discs are very small. There is no webbing between the toes. Vomerine teeth are absent.

It is reddish-brown to tan-brown dorsally, with lighter tan or brown dorsolateral areas. There is a narrow light tan mid-dorsal stripe extending from snout to vent, and onto the posterior face of each thigh. The head is mahogany or dark brown. There is a very dark brown lateral region from the tip of the snout to the groin region and extending to the anterior surfaces of the thighs. One or two dark brown or black sacral spots are present.

The front limbs are bright red or orange above and below, except for brown digital tips. The hind limbs are similar to the dorsum with inconspicuous and irregular darker bands, except for the feet which are dark orange. The venter and underside of the hind limbs are dark brown with some white flecks or dots. The chin and throat are reddish-tan or orange mottled with white, with this color extending to the level of the front limbs.

This species is endemic to Cuba and it is known only from Sierra del Turquino in the Sierra Maestra mountains, eastern Cuba, at elevations between 1000-1400 m. This is a terrestrial species found in the leaf litter of rainforests, cloud forests and pine woods.

Habitat lost due to anthropogenic activity (logging, road construction and coffee cultivation) seem be the greatest threats to this species. Other threats include habitat destruction due to disturbance from tourist activities, as well as infrastructure development for human settlement.

Cuba Naturaleza Biodiversity

© 2023 Nigel Hunt