Afrixalus fulvovittatus (Cope, 1861)

Class: Amphibia > Order: Anura > Family: Hyperoliidae > Genus: Afrixalus > Species: Afrixalus fulvovittatus

Hyperolius fulvovittatus Cope, 1861 "1860", Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia, 12: 517. Holotype: ANSP 3219, according to Malnate, 1971, Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia, 123: 350. Type locality: "Liberia".

Hyperolius fulvovittatusBocage, 1866, J. Sci. Math. Phys. Nat., Lisboa, 1: 55.

Rappia fulvovittataGünther, 1869 "1868", Proc. Zool. Soc. London, 1868: 479. Boulenger, 1882, Cat. Batr. Sal. Coll. Brit. Mus., Ed. 2: 121.

Hyperolius fulvovittatusNoble, 1924, Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist., 49: 252. Ahl, 1931, Das Tierreich, 55: 330.

Megalixalus fulvovittatusBarbour and Loveridge, 1930, in Strong (ed.), Afr. Rep. Liberia Belgian Congo, 2: 782.

Hyperolius brevipalmatus Ahl, 1931, Das Tierreich, 55: 279. Holotype: ZMB 24499 according to Perret, 1962, Rev. Zool. Bot. Afr., 65: 246. Type locality: "Sangmelina Süd Kamerun". The description in Ahl, 1931, Mitt. Zool. Mus. Berlin, 17: 25, appeared a few weeks later according to unpublished notes by A. Loveridge (fide R. Laurent). Synonymy with Afrixalus fulvovittatus by Loveridge, 1936, Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool., 79: 371; Perret, 1962, Rev. Zool. Bot. Afr., 65: 246. Assigned by implication to Afrixalus "quadrivittatus" by Pickersgill, 2007, Afr. J. Herpetol., 56: 23-37. See comment. Regarded as a subspecies of Afrixalus fulvovittatus by Amiet, 2009, Rev. Suisse Zool., 116: 77.

Afrixalus fulvovittatus fulvovittatusLaurent, 1951, Ann. Soc. R. Zool. Belg., 82: 27.

Afrixalus brevipalmatusLasso, Rial, Castroviejo, and De la Riva, 2002, Graellsia, 58: 21-34.

Afrixalus fulvovittatus brevipalmatusAmiet, 2009, Rev. Suisse Zool., 116: 77. See comment.

English Names

Banded Banana Frog (Afrixalus fulvovittatus: Frank and Ramus, 1995, Compl. Guide Scient. Common Names Amph. Rept. World: 65).

Four-lined Spiny Reed Frog (Channing and Howell, 2006, Amph. E. Afr.: 135).

Four-lined Leaf-folding Frog (Channing and Howell, 2006, Amph. E. Afr.: 135 [alternative name]).

Striped Spiny Reed Frog (Emms, Jambang, Bah, Mankali, Rödel, and Barnett, 2005, Herpetol. Bull., London, 94: 13).


Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone to western Ivory Coast, possibly to Gambia; southern to north-central Cameroon; likely in adjacent Equatorial Guinea, Rep. Congo, and western, possibly to north-east-central Central African Republic. See comment. 


Pickersgill, 2007, Afr. J. Herpetol., 56: 23-37, redelimited and restricted application of this name to a species of the Guinea-Liberia-Sierra Leone-Ivory Coast block of West Africa, relegating an enormous number of records to Afrixalus "quadrivittatus". Pickersgill, Schiotz, and Rödel in Afrixalus fulvovittatus IUCN, Conservation International, and NatureServe, 2004, Global Amph. Assessment, restricted the distribution to eastern Sierra Leone, southern Guinea, nothern Liberia, and western Ivory Coast, thereby leaving an enormous number of records throughout the wider range implicitly unassigned to species. Schiøtz, 1999, Treefrogs Afr.: 59-62, discussed the uncertainty of previous species diagnoses within this complex of poorly understood species and discussed the geographically complex variation; he also discussed the serious nomenclatural confusion in the use of the name leptosomus for a race of Afrixalus dorsalis or a component of variation within Afrixalus fulvovittatus. Literature using these names should be followed cautiously. See also Perret, 1976, Bull. Soc. Neuchatel. Sci. Nat., 99: 20-23. Rödel, 2000, Herpetofauna W. Afr., 1: 232-238, provided an account and discussed various confusions in the literature and addressed the problem of application of the name Megalixalus leptosomus. Gambia record by Barnett, Emms, and Santoni, 2001, Herpetol. Bull., London, 77: 9. The systematics of this taxon is confused; see discussion of the problems by Largen, 2001, Tropical Zool., 14: 357-358. De la Riva, 1994, Rev. Esp. Herpetol., 8: 129, provided the record for Equatorial Guinea. Köhler, Scheelke, Schick, Veith, and Lötters, 2005, Afr. Zool., 40: 131-133, discussed confusion with Afrixalus leptosomus and Afrixalus quadrivittatus and the uncertainty of the range. Channing and Howell, 2006, Amph. E. Afr.: 135-136, provided an account for East African populations and extended the range into East Africa (but who noted that the East and West African populations were likely distinct species). Padial and De la Riva, 2004, Rev. Esp. Herpetol., 18: 96, suggested that this species will be found in southern Mauritania. Lasso, Rial, Castroviejo, and De la Riva, 2002, Graellsia, 58: 21-34, provided notes on ecological distribution in Equatorial Guinea (as Afrixalus brevipalmatus). Emms, Jambang, Bah, Mankali, Rödel, and Barnett, 2005, Herpetol. Bull., London, 94: 6-16, noted that Gambia records apply to an unnamed species. Segniagbeto, Bowessidjaou, Dubois, and Ohler, 2007, Alytes, 24: 76, did not list this species as occurring in Togo. See comments by Rödel, Gil, Agyei, Leaché, Diaz, Fujita, and Ernst, 2005, Salamandra, 41: 117-118. Pickersgill, 2007, Afr. J. Herpetol., 56: 23-37, revised and redelimited the species. Jacobsen, 2009, Afr. Herp News, 47: 2-20, reported this species from east-north-central Central African Republic but noted that this was provisional. Amiet, 2009, Rev. Suisse Zool., 116: 53, considered Afrixalus brevipalmatus to be conspecific (but a subspecies) with Afrixalus fulvovittatus. Amiet, 2009, Rev. Suisse Zool., 116: 53-92, discussed the complex taxonomic issues in Cameroon. See account for Cameroon by Amiet, 2012, Rainettes Cameroun: 92-101. Channing, Rödel, and Channing, 2012, Tadpoles of Africa: 188–189, reported on comparative tadpole morphology. Marques, Ceríaco, Blackburn, and Bauer, 2018, Proc. California Acad. Sci., Ser. 4, 65 (Suppl. II): 85–86, provided a map for Angola and a brief account, noting the so-far unaddressed taxonomic uncertainties surrounding the nominal species, which following Pickersgill, 2007, Afr. J. Herpetol., 56: 23-37, have the Angolan records currently assigned to Afrixalus "quadrivittatus".   

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