Epipedobates tricolor

Epipedobates (Epipedo Greek = of the ground + bates Greek = one that walks or haunts)

Tricolor = three colors*

Epipedobates tricolor is a great frog, well worth searching out. The brilliant colors of many tricolor morphs rival any dart frog, while their boldness make them easily viewed. E. tricolor also have a lively nature and wonderful, trill like, call that make them endearing.

Maybe it's their vivid reds or their bold nature, but the "Santa Isabel" tricolors has wrapped itself in tall tales and false legend... and at least one amazing true tale of its pain killing skin toxin. One of the common stories is that in captivity the stripes change. There are reports that the white stripes thin over generations of captive breeding leaving a mostly red frog, and there are reports that the red stripes thin in generations of captive breeding leaving a mostly white frog. It's unlikely that these both could be going on which makes me believe that neither is. When I received a group of tricolor, whose parents were collected near San Domingo, I was greatly fascinated. Though they looked like my line "Santa Isabel" tricolors, in shape and skin color, (lipstick red in the adults), they had very thin and broken off white medial dorsal and lateral stripes. They had the same off white spotting on their bellies and lacked flash marks.

After reading through what literature I could find I came to the conclusion that "Santa Isabel" tricolor is made up of several populations who share the same base coat of lipstick red but the thickness of their white stripes differ. These "San Domingo" tricolors are from the 'thin white stripes' side of the variations.

Copyright © 2007-2013, Tor Linbo & Trevor Anderson, tlinbo@u.washington.edu. All rights reserved. No part of this web site may be duplicated or retransmitted without the expressed permission of the authors. Based heavily on original web design by Trevor Anderson 1999.