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Alytidae Fitzinger, 1843

Class: Amphibia > Order: Anura > Family: Alytidae
12 species

Alytae Fitzinger, 1843, Syst. Rept.: 32. Type genus: Alytes Wagler, 1829.

Colodactyli Tschudi, 1845, Arch. Naturgesch., 11: 167. Type genus: Colodactylus Tschudi, 1845. Synonymy with Discoglossidae by implication of Peters, 1873, Monatsber. Preuss. Akad. Wiss. Berlin, 1873: 623.

AlytinaBonaparte, 1850, Conspect. Syst. Herpetol. Amph.: 1 p.

AlytidaeGünther, 1858, Proc. Zool. Soc. London, 1858: 346; Günther, 1859, Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist., Ser. 3, 3: 69.

Discoglossidae Günther, 1858, Proc. Zool. Soc. London, 1858: 346. Type genus: Discoglossus Otth, 1837. Synonymy by Günther, 1859, Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist., Ser. 3, 3: 69; Bolkay, 1919, Glasn. Zemaljskog Muz. Bosni Hercegov., 31: 348.

DiscoglossinaMivart, 1869, Proc. Zool. Soc. London, 1869: 294.

DiscoglossinaeFejérváry, 1922 "1921", Arch. Naturgesch., Abt. A, 87: 25; Dubois, 2005, Alytes, 23: 7; Blackburn and Wake, 2011, In Zhang (ed.), Zootaxa, 3148: 39–55.

DiscoglossoideaLaurent, 1967, Acta Zool. Lilloana, 22: 207; Duellman, 1975, Occas. Pap. Mus. Nat. Hist. Univ. Kansas, 42: 4; Laurent, 1980 "1979", Bull. Soc. Zool. France, 104: 417.

AlytiniSanchíz, 1984, in Alcover (ed.), Hist. Bioògica Ferreret: 61. Tribe, applied within the family Discloglossidae Günther, 1858.

Alytinae  Dubois, 1987 "1986", Alytes, 5: 12; Dubois, 2005, Alytes, 23: 7.

ColodactylidaeDubois, 1987 "1986", Alytes, 5: 12.

AlytidaeFrost, Grant, Faivovich, Bain, Haas, Haddad, de Sá, Channing, Wilkinson, Donnellan, Raxworthy, Campbell, Blotto, Moler, Drewes, Nussbaum, Lynch, and Green, 2006, Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist., 297: 184.

Alytinae  Blackburn and Wake, 2011, In Zhang (ed.), Zootaxa, 3148: 39–55.

English Names

Painted Frogs (Frank and Ramus, 1995, Compl. Guide Scient. Common Names Amph. Rept. World: 51).


Western Europe, Mediterranean North Africa, and Israel, possibly into Syria.


Frost, Grant, Faivovich, Bain, Haas, Haddad, de Sá, Channing, Wilkinson, Donnellan, Raxworthy, Campbell, Blotto, Moler, Drewes, Nussbaum, Lynch, and Green, 2006, Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist., 297: 184, provided a summary of taxonomy history, estimate of phylogenetic placement, and accepted the name of priority, which is Alytidae, for the taxon composed of Discoglossus and Alytes. See Dubois, 1984, Mem. Mus. Natl. Hist. Nat. Paris, A—Zool., 131: 1–64, and Dubois, 1987, Alytes, 6: 56–68, for discussion of family-group nomenclature (in the sense of including Bombinatoridae of this list). Lanza, Cei, and Crespo, 1975, Monit. Zool. Ital., N.S., Suppl., 9: 153–162, and Lanza, Cei, and Crespo, 1976, Monit. Zool. Ital., N.S., Suppl., 10: 311–314, considered, on the basis of immunological evidence, that Discoglossus should be maintained in Discoglossidae, while Alytes and Bombina should be placed in a new family, Bombinidae; Barbourula was not assigned to family. Estes and Sanchíz, 1982, J. Vert. Paleontol., 2: 18, discussed relationships within the group. See also Maxson and Szymura, 1985 "1984", Amphibia-Reptilia, 5: 245–252, and Dubois, 1987 "1986", Alytes, 5: 13, for additional discussion. Sanchíz, 1984, in Alcover (ed.), Hist. Bioògica Ferreret: 61–103, discussed phylogeny of the Recent and fossil species. Haas, 2003, Cladistics, 19: 23–89, discussed the phylogeny of the group and commented on previous arrangements, and suggested, on the basis of larval morphology, that the relationships of this group are Alytes (Discoglossus + Bombina) [he did not address Barbourula, which appears to be a direct-developer]. Dubois, 2005, Alytes, 23: 7, considered Alytinae and Discoglossinae to be subfamilies of Bombinatoridae. San Mauro, García-París, and Zardoya, 2004, Gene, 343: 357–366, discussed phylogenetic relationships of the family based on molecular evidence. Roelants and Bossuyt, 2005, Syst. Biol., 54: 111–126, found Bombinatoridae + Discoglossidae (= Alytidae) to form the sister taxon of all frogs, excepting Amphicoela (= Leiopelmatidae + Ascaphidae), as did Roelants, Gower, Wilkinson, Loader, Biju, Guillaume, Moriau, and Bossuyt, 2007, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 104: 887–892. Bossuyt and Roelants, 2009, in Hedges and Kumar (eds.), Timetree of Life: 357–364, suggested on the basis of estimated divergence time (late Jurassic) that Alytes and Discoglossus should be regarded as constituting separate families, Alytidae and Discoglossidae. Blackburn, Bickford, Diesmos, Iskandar, and Brown, 2010, PLoS One, 5 (8: e 12090): 1–8, suggested on molecular grounds that Discoglossus and Alytes diverged in the Cretaceous. Pyron and Wiens, 2011, Mol. Phylogenet. Evol., 61: 543–583, confirmed the relationship of Alytes and Discoglossus and followed Bossuyt and Roelants, 2009, in regarding the two clades as distinct families. Blackburn and Wake, 2011, In Zhang (ed.), Zootaxa, 3148: 39–55, recognized an Alytidae with two monotypic subfamilies, Alytine and Discoglossinae, an arrangement that they apparently saw as a political compromise between two monogeneric families and one family with two genera. Vitt and Caldwell, 2013, Herpetology, 4th Ed., provided a summary of life history, diagnosis, and taxonomy.

Contained taxa (12 sp.):

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