Nidicolous development in Limnonectes limborgi (Anura, Dicroglossidae)

in Amphibia-Reptilia
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The Southeast Asian frog Limnonectes limborgi and the closely related L. hascheanus have been considered direct developers for almost 50 years. We report that rather than having direct development, L. limborgi has nidicolous development (= eggs oviposited terrestrially and larvae are free-living but nonfeeding) from large, nonpigmented eggs laid in a terrestrial nest constructed by the male. Thirteen nests were observed at four sites in Cambodia and Vietnam, five of which contained clutches of up to 15 eggs or tadpoles. Calling males were in attendance regardless of the presence of or developmental stage of their progeny. Large yolk reserves present as late as stage 37 and the lack of organic material in the gut indicate that these tadpoles do not feed. It is likely that L. hascheanus also has nidicolous development.

Nidicolous development in Limnonectes limborgi (Anura, Dicroglossidae)

in Amphibia-Reptilia



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  • View in gallery

    (A) Adult male of Limnonectes limborgi in the process of building a nest, (B) adult male within a completed nest, (C) an embryo at about stage 19, (D) clutch of 12, recently oviposited, nonpigmented eggs in a nest without free water, (E) 15 nonpigmented tadpoles at stage 28, and (F) seven tadpoles at about stage 37 in a small volume of fluid. This figure is published in colour in the online version.


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