Inornate Froglet
Micryletta inornata (Boulenger, 1890)

Family: Microhylidae - Narrow-mouthed Frogs

Order: Anura - Frogs

Class: Amphibia

Phylum: Chordata - Vertebrates

Kingdom: Animalia

Red List status: Least Concern

Inornate froglet. Nakhon Ratchasima Province, Thailand.

                        Male            Female

Adult length:    23 mm            30 mm

Tadpole length: 19.1 mm


India west to China, occurring throughout Indochina and the Malay Peninsula. Populations occur on Sumatra and several small islands adjacent to the Southeast Asian mainland, including Phuket and Taiwan, although the species has not been recorded from Singapore.

            Range             Description            Habitat            Behaviour            Taxonomy            References
Other common names: Plain narrow-mouthed frog





Adult: A slender frog with a distinctly flattened body, smooth skin and a rounded snout. The tympanum is visible; limbs are long and slender, and all digits are long, without webbing or toe discs. Dorsal colouration ranges from dark reddish-brown to violet, either unpatterned or with an irregular pattern of black or brown spots or blotches. Limbs may be partially barred, or unpatterned. A wide black stripe may be present; if so, this extends from the tip of the snout along the flanks to the groin.


Larvae: A dark brown, flattened oval tadpole that, nevertheless, looks almost spherical from above.  Distinctively, a tail filament is present. The eyes are situated at the sides of the head. The mouth is located at the front of the head. The single spiracle opens next to the anus.


Similar species: The almost rectangular body shape of this species helps to distinguish it from Microhyla species, which are often distinctly triangular. In addition, Microhyla species lack a visible tympanum and possess toe discs. It may also exhibit a preference for less disturbed areas than some Southeast Asian Microhyla. The tadpole of Micryletta inornata strongly resembles that of Microhyla fissipes in shape and size; however tadpoles of the latter species are almost transparent, with a dark rim to the tail fins (in M. inornata, the tail fins are either completely dark or, less commonly, completely transparent). The larvae of the Asian banded bullfrog (Kaloula pulchra) are larger.





Forest and forest edges, typically where habitat has been disturbed. Individual shelter sites are typically beneath rocks or logs.


Elevation: Recorded from altitudes of up to 50 m in India (van Dijk et al, 2004), but occurs to at least 390 m in Thailand (pers. obs.), and potentially up to 1,813 m in Phnom Aural Wildlife Sanctuary, Cambodia (Thy & Holden, 2008).





Reproductive behaviour: This is an explosive-breeding species, in which large numbers of animals aggregate around temporary ponds to reproduce.





The genus name Micryletta is not universally accepted, and this species is sometimes referred to as Microhyla inornata.





Heyer, W.R. (1971) Descriptions of some tadpoles from Thailand Fieldiana: Zoology 58 (7): 83-91

Thy, N. and Holden, J. (2008) A Field Guide to the Amphibians of Cambodia Fauna & Flora International, Phnom Penh: 127pp

Van Dijk, P.P., Nabhitabhata, J., Datong, Y., Shunqing, L., Dutta, S. (2004). Micryletta inornata. In: IUCN 2008. 2008 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.