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Reproductive behaviour in the neotropical foam-nesting frog Pleurodema diplolistris (Leptodactylidae)

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Field observations and laboratory video studies were conducted on call production and foam-nest construction of the leptodactylid frog, Pleurodema diplolistris, in João Pessoa, Paraiba (Brazil). Males call during the night while floating on the water surface. Sound is generated by the inspiratory airstream during pulmonary respiration. Calls have a mean duration of 11.4 s and consist of a series oflow frequency notes given at a mean rate of 536 min-1. Pairs mate in axillary amplexus while floating on the water surface. Between 528 and 748 eggs are deposited in a foam nest. Nesting bouts can be divided into three consecutive phases: (1) female lordosis and egg extrusion and male basket formation; (2) foam beating, and (3) foam smoothing by the male. Bouts last up to 2.9 s and occur at a mean rate of 6.0 min-1. Fifty-one to 101 activity phases are needed to complete nest construction, which lasts between 6:48 and 17:04 min. Interconnected, communal nests outnumber single foam masses. Larvae hatch 22 to 26 h after oviposition at the external gill stage.

Affiliations: 1: Institut für Zoologie der Universität Wien, Althanstraße 14, A-1090 Wien, Austria


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