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Odorrana swinhoana Boulengeer,1903 (斯文豪氏蛙)

Scientific Name: Odorrana swinhoana Boulengeer,1903
Common Name: Swinhoe's frog
Chinese name: 斯文豪氏蛙


Swinhoe’s frog is an amphibian species that is endemic to Taiwan. Its distribution is the entire island of Taiwan in mountain streams at 2000 meters or below. It prefers to inhabit the fissures between rocks or cavities along the banks of mountain streams. During the day it hides in the fissures between the rocks and at night it is active, foraging for insects along the stream bank.

~~Morphological Characteristics ~~
Adults: This is a large-sized frog. The male measures 6-7cm in length and the female 7-8cm. The skin is smooth or covered in densely packed granules and small tubercles. The granules on the lower back and sides are especially large and protrudent. The snout is round and pointed and the head is longer than it is wide. The tympanum is black and distinct. It measures about half the eye diameter. The dorsal color varies greatly from brown or yellowish brown with green stripes to grayish brown or green with brown or black spots. Mid-dorsal stripe is absent.
The flanks are light brown or light green and covered with many black spots. The dorsolateral fold is discontinuous and indistinct. The belly is white without spots. There are dark brown transverse stripes on the dorsal side of forelimbs. Fingers are free of webs with fingertips expanded into distinct disks. There are dark brown transverse stripes on the dorsal side of the hindlimbs. The toes are fully webbed with toetips expanded into distinct disks. Inner metatarsal tubercles are oval in shape while outer metatarsal tubercles are small or reduced.
Secondary sexual characteristics: The male has a pair of visible vocal sacs on the side of the throat.  On the inner side of the first finger is a puffy nuptial pad.

Color: The body and tail are brown or dark brown. The posterior section of the tail shows slight mottling. In the eastern population, the tail coloring is more even and dark brown.
Body shape: 10.3~15.9mm (stage 31~38), oval
Snout: Wide and round
Mouth: Cup-shaped, ventral
Labial tooth row formula (LTRF):  (3-5)/3(1)
Eyes: Dorso-lateral
Spiracles: Lower lateral
Tail:  Low arch; wide and round at the tip

~~Taxonomic Studies~~


Boulenger, G. A.

Year of publication


Person credited with discovery


Date of discovery



Boulenger, G. A. 1908.Descriptions of new Batrachians in the British Museum. Annals and Magazine of Natural History, London, ser.7,12(71):552-557

Type specimen classification



Scientific name changes

Rana swinhoana Boulenger, G. A. 1908. Annals and Magazine of Natural History, London, ser.7, 12:556.

Rana kosempensis Werner, F. 1913. Mitt. Naturhist. Mus., Hamburg, 30:48.



~~Ecology and Behavior ~~
Swinhoe's frog inhabits places near mountain streams, river valleys, waterfalls or other waterfront areas. It often hides in rock caves or in the grass near streams in the daytime while appearing usually alone in the grass near water, on rock walls or stones at night. Its calls are discontinuous, similar to bird chirps. It does not call often but if one starts to call, others will echo. The calls rise here and there, forming a vigorous chorus. Eggs are white and laid in globs attached to stone crevices or under stones in shallow water. The female lays hundreds of eggs at one time. This species feeds on insects next to streams, and sometimes even on smaller-sized frogs.

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