Extinct Amphibians

Until recently, there has been little focus on amphibian extinctions. Amphibians are declining more rapidly and are more threatened than either birds or mammals. The main cause of this current rappid decline is most likely chytridiomycosis. Chytridiomycosis is an infectious funcal disease of amphibians, caused by the chytrid Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. Its spread and the subsequent declines of amphibian populations and species has been dramatically expedited by global warming. 

It is difficult to gain a clear, current picture of the status of amphibian population, because their extinctions are happening so rapidly, and few scientists are monitoring them. The indications are that the extinction of amphibians is the most serious wave of all extinctions currently taking place.

The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (version 2021-3) shows that at least 2490 of the 7297 amphibian species on Earth are known to be threatened with extinction. According to the IUCN at least 35 amphibian species have become extinct since the year 1500. However, two of them have recently been rediscovered in the wild: the Vegas Vally Leopard Frog (Lithobates fisheri) in 2011 and the Longnose Stubfoot Toad (Atelopus longirostris) in 2016.

A male Golden Toad. Photographed before 15 May 1989 by Charles H. Smith (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service). Public Domain.

However, the real situation could be much worse, as 146 amphibian species are listed as Critically Endangered (Possibly Extinct) and 1193 amphibian species as Data Deficient. As information improves, many more amphibians may well prove to be in danger of extinction or already extinct.

Do you know any species or subspecies that should be added to this list or has been rediscovered? If so, please contact this website


The subjoined table shows the amphibian species that recently became ‘globally extinct’ (EX).

Scientific NameCommon NameLast sighting / EED [1]IUCN status
Atelopus vogliVogl’s Stubfoot Toad1957EX
Craugastor chrysozetetesMcCranie’s Robber Frog1994?EX
Hypselotriton wolterstorffiYunnan Lake Newt1979EX
Incilius periglenesGolden Toad1989EX
Nannophrys guentheriGunther’s Streamlined Frog1882EX
Phrynomedusa fimbriataSpiny-knee Leaf Frog1896EX
Plethodon ainsworthiAinsworth’s Salamander1964EX
Pseudophilautus adspersusThwaite’s Shrub Frog1886EX
Pseudophilautus dimbullaeDimbulla Shrub Frog1933EX
Pseudophilautus eximiusQueenwood Shrub Frog1933EX
Pseudophilautus extirpoBlunt-snouted Shrub Frog1882EX
Pseudophilautus halyiPattipola Shrub Frog1899EX
Pseudophilautus leucorhinusWhite-nosed Shrub FrogBefore 1856EX
Pseudophilautus maiaMaia Shrub Frog(Before) 1876EX
Pseudophilautus malcolmsmithiMalcolm Smith’s Shrub Frog(Before) 1927EX
Pseudophilautus nanusSouthern Shrub Frog1869EX
Pseudophilautus nasutusPointed-snouted Shrub Frog1869EX
Pseudophilautus oxyrhynchusSharp-snouted Shrub Frog1872EX
Pseudophilautus pardusLeopard Shrub FrogBefore 1859EX
Pseudophilautus rugatusFarnland Shrub Frog1927EX
Pseudophilautus temporalisStriped-snout Shrub Frog1864EX
Pseudophilautus variabilisGunther’s Shrub Frog1858?EX
Pseudophilautus zalWhite-blotched Shrub FrogBefore 1947EX
Pseudophilautus zimmeriRumassala Shrub Frog1927EX
Rheobatrachus silusSouthern Gastric Brooding Frog1981EX
Rheobatrachus vitellinusNorthern Gastric Brooding Frog1985EX
Taudactylus diurnusMount Glorious Torrent Frog1979EX