IUCN threat status:

Least Concern (LC)

Comprehensive Description

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Males are approximately 30 mm long and females are slightly larger. The skin of the túngara frog is brown and pustular, giving it a toadlike appearance that is reflected in its scientific name (Ryan 1985). No teeth are present on the maxilla and premaxilla; tubercles are present on the dorsum in a variable pattern that may include large tubercles in longitudinal rows, chevrons, or both large and small tubercles randomly scattered (Cannatella and Duellman 1984). It also has a tuberculate tympanic membrane and the first finger is longer than the second.

Can frogs with foam nests help make biofuels? The long-lasting foam nests of the Túngara frog (Engystomops pustulosus) help protect its tadpoles. Now a team of researchers has designed a novel artificial photosynthesis system suspended in a foam, using the Túngara frog surfactant protein Ranaspumin-2. The system could produce up to 10-fold more biofuel per hectare than plants and could be used on rooftops and nonarable land (Wendell et al. 2010).

Video by the Royal Society.

A Spanish-language species account can be found at the website of Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad (INBio).


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