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Text and photos by Nick Baker, unless credited to others.
Copyright ゥ Ecology Asia 2024







Larut Hills Chorus Frog

Species : Microhyla (Nanohyla) annectens
Size (snout to vent) : Female 1.8 cm, Male 1.6 cm

More commonly called 'Larut Hills Rice Frog', this small amphibian inhabits upper hill and montane areas of Peninsular Malaysia, up to elevations of around 1500 metres.

During rainy conditions these tiny frogs will congregate around small pools on the forest floor to breed.

In the field, this species can be identified by its patterning and colouration which comprises a brownish dorsum with a large, distinctive, symmetrical, dark brown marking in the centre, and dark brown markings on the upper flanks. There is a pale streak extending from the eye towards the rear of jaw, and a single well-defined, narrow, dark cross bar is present on the thigh. The belly is pale or marbled.

The tadpole has a rounded head, small eyes which are positioned laterally, and an area of gold flecks along the dorsal line which broadens towards the posterior part of the body. Scattered gold flecks may also occur towards the snout.

This species is endemic to Peninsular Malaysia, and it appears largely restricted to upland areas including the western mountain range called Banjaran Bintang (Grismer et al, 2010), and the Titiwangsa mountains (= 'main range') which make up the central spine of the peninsula.

In the lowlands, there is a historical record of Microhyla annectens at the entrance to Batu Caves, Selangor (Boulenger, 1912): it is unclear how a recognised montane species came to be found in this lowland location, or if the species still survives there.

Figs 1 and 2 : Example from montane habitat at Genting Highlands.

Fig 3 : The tadpole has a rounded head, small eyes positioned laterally, and an arrangement of gold flecks along the dorsal line.

All photos thanks to the Law brothers: Law Ingg Thong and Law Ing Sind.

References : H3

Boulenger GA (1912) A Vertebrate Fauna of the Malay Peninsula from the Isthmus of Kra to Singapore, including the Adjacent Islands : Reptilia and Batrachia. Taylor & Francis, London, xiii, 294 pp.  

Grismer, L. L., Chan, K. O., Grismer, J. L., Wood Jr, P. L., & Norhayati, A. (2010). A checklist of the herpetofauna of the Banjaran Bintang, Peninsular Malaysia. Russian Journal of Herpetology, 17(2), 147-160.


Fig 1
ゥ  Law Ingg Thong
Fig 2
ゥ  Law Ingg Thong
Fig 3
ゥ  Law Ing Sind