Discovered in 1978, the Api dwarf toad is an endangered toad known from only one locality on the island of Borneo (1)(2). It is a small, dark frog with indistinct pale markings formed by unpigmented skin, and slender fingers with bluntly rounded tips (2)(3). At higher altitudes, individuals have more extensive pale markings, and the males tend to be larger in size than those at lower altitudes (2).
Very little is known about the biology of the Api dwarf toad, but, like other species in the genus, the larvae probably subsist entirely on yolk, and occur in small pools on the forest floor (1)(2)(4). The male has a high-pitched call, which it makes from the leaves of low plants on wet nights (2).
Endemic to Borneo, where it is only known from the Gunung Mulu National Park in northern Sarawak, Malaysia. It possibly also occurs in neighbouring Brunei, but its presence there has not been confirmed (1).
The Api dwarf toad appears to have an extremely restricted range, meaning that even a relatively small-scale disturbance could have a devastating impact on its population. Furthermore, the extent and quality of its habitat on Borneo is continuing to decline (1).
The Gunung Mulu National Park, home to the only known population of the Api dwarf toad, is a protected area and the most studied tropical karst area in the world. Nonetheless further survey work is needed to establish the size of the population in the park, and to determine whether this species is present in any other limestone karst areas on Borneo (1).
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