Title

The reproductive biology and larvae of the first tadpole-bearing frog, Limnonectes larvaepartus.

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Abstract

Most of the reproductive modes of frogs include an exotrophic tadpole, but a number of taxa have some form of endotrophic development that lacks a feeding tadpole stage. The dicroglossid frog genus Limnonectes ranges from China south into Indonesia. The breeding biologies of the approximately 60 described species display an unusual diversity that range from exotrophic tadpoles to endotrophic development in terrestrial nests. There have been mentions of oviductal production of typical, exotrophic tadpoles in an undescribed species of Limnonectes from Sulawesi, Indonesia. Here we examine newly collected specimens of this species, now described as L. larvaepartus and present the first substantial report on this unique breeding mode. Typical exotrophic tadpoles that are retained to an advanced developmental stage in the oviducts of a female frog are birthed into slow-flowing streams or small, non-flowing pools adjacent to the streams.

Publisher

Public Library of Science

DOI

10.1371/journal.pone.0116154

Publication Date

1-2-2015

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Department

Department of Biological Sciences

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