Graduation Semester and Year




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Quantitative Biology



First Advisor

Eric N Smith


After Van Kampen’s 1905–1911 visit to Indonesia culminating in his Amphibians of the Indo-Australian Archipelago (1923), there has been no extensive herpetological exploration and compendium for Indonesia, particularly for Sumatra, Java, and Kalimantan. This lack of herpetological surveys has resulted in recent molecular studies from Southeast Asia lacking samples from Sumatra, Java, and Kalimantan, and subsequent underestimation of herpetofaunal diversity, inaccuracies in phylogeny and biogeography, and lack of massive conservation status assessments. This is truer for the not so aesthetically appealing and rather warty bufonid toads of Indonesia, which have received very little attention from the small scientific community who study the herpetofauna in Sumatra, Java, and Kalimantan. Herein I address those shortcomings by generating comprehensive molecular datasets to study bufonid toads in the Sunda Shelf. I leveraged molecular, morphological, bioclimatic, geographic, and habitat data to discover genetic and distributional patterns of bufonid diversity. My study discovered one of the most elusive Southeast Asian bufonid genus, one endemic to Sumatra—Sigalegalephrynus. With molecular, morphological, bioclimatic, and acoustic data, I describe six Sigalegalephrynus species, five now provisionally placed to the IUCN Red List category of “Endangered”. I also investigated the phylogeny and distribution of two other genera—Phrynoidis and Leptophryne and identified multiple candidate undescribed species in both of these genera. This study will benefit future studies of bufonid toads in the Sundaland region and will serve as a framework for future molecular studies of Asian Bufonidae.


Southeast Asia, Bufonidae, Sundashelf, Amphibian Diversity, Sigalegalephrynus, Phrynoidis, Leptophryne, Niche Modeling, IUCN red List


Biology | Life Sciences


Degree granted by The University of Texas at Arlington

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