An Annotated Bibliography of the Cliff Chirping Frog

(Syrrhophus marnockii Cope)

Compiled by Tom Lott [TEL].

[These bibliographies and their annotations are an on-going project. I have many comments on papers that I have not yet posted but I will attempt   to attend to this task as time allows. Comments proffered in the annotations are strictly my own opinions and should be taken as such. If you wish to comment or supply additional references that I have overlooked, you may contact me via E-mail. Xerox or PDF copies of papers in more difficult to obtain journals are highly welcomed  To correspond with me, click here.  Thanks for reading, Tom Lott ]

Baker, J.K. 1956. Frogs of Texas caves. Tex. Caver 1(10): 8-9.

Baldauf, R.J. and E.C. Tanzer. 1965. Contributions to the cranial morphology of the leptodactylid  frog, Syrrhophus marnocki Cope. Tex. J. Sci. 17(1):71-100.

Blair, W.F. 1949. The biotic provinces of Texas. Texas J. Sci. 2(1):93-117.

Brown, B.C. 1950. An annotated check list of the reptiles and amphibians of Texas. Waco, Tex.:Baylor Univ. Studies. [Referred to as the "Balcones Chirper."  Recorded in thirteen central    Texas counties, west to Val Verde and Sutton Cos.   A key to the Texas species is provided. Suggests (under the S. gaigeae {= S. guttilatus} account) that S. marnocki and S. gaigeae "may actually be the same species or at most subspecies."   Under "Remarks": "Syrrhophus marnockii is common throughout its range in central Texas.  It is perhaps one of our most interesting and picturesque frogs.  Little is known of its life history as is true of all the members of the genus Syrrhophus in Texas.  Its relation to S. gaigeae needs investigation." -- TEL]

Conant, R. 1958. A field guide to the reptiles and amphibians of the United States and Canada east of the 100th meridian. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co.

Conant, R. and J.T. Collins. 1991. A field guide to reptiles and amphibians of eastern-central North America. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co.

Conant, R. and J.T. Collins. 1998. A field guide to reptiles and amphibians of eastern-central North America, 3rd edition (expanded). Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co.

Cope, E.D. 1878a. A Texas cliff frog. Am. Nat. 12: 186.

Cope, E.D. 1878b. A new genus of Cystignathidae from Texas. Am. Nat. 12: 253. [The original description of this taxon -- TEL]

Cope, E.D. 1889. The Batrachia of North America. Bull. U.S. Natl. Mus. 34: 1-525.

Curtis, L. 1951b. Physiographic influence of the Edwards Plateau on its endemic amphibian fauna-a resume. Field Lab 19(3): 119-124.

Dickerson, M.C. 1931. The frog book. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, Doran and Co.

Dixon, J.R. 1987. Amphibians and reptiles of Texas. College Station: Texas A&M Press.

Dixon, J.R. 1993. Supplement to the literature for the Amphibians and reptiles of Texas, 1987. Smithson. Herpetol. Info. Serv. 94:1-43.

Dixon, J.R. 1996b. Ten year supplement to Texas herpetological county records published in Amphibians and reptiles of Texas, 1987. Texas Herpetol. Soc. Spec. Publ. (2):1-64.

Dixon, J.R. 1997. 1997 supplement to Texas herpetological county records and Texas literature. Texas Herpetol. Soc. Spec. Publ. (3):1-14

Dixon, J.R. 2000. Amphibians and reptiles of Texas. (2nd edition). College Station: Texas A&M Press.  [Includes 61 literature citations for this species- from which most of these were initially drawn;  declines to follow Hedges' lumping of Syrrhophus into a subgenus of Eleutherodactylus - TEL]

Fouquette, M.J., Jr. 1960. Call structure in frogs of the family Leptodactylidae. Tex. J. Sci. 12(3-4): 210-215.

Frost, Darrel R. 2004. Amphibian Species of the World: an Online Reference. Version 3.0 (22 August, 2004). Electronic Database accessible at American Museum of Natural History, New York, USA.  [Under Eleutherodactylus, provides synonomy, English names (though omitting Bryce Brown's {1950} "Balcones Chirper"), distribution, contained taxa, incertae sedis, and comments -- TEL]

Garrett, J.M. and D.G. Barker. 1987. A Field Guide to the Reptiles and Amphibians of Texas. Austin: Texas Monthly Press.

Gehlbach, F.R. And J.K. Baker. 1962. Kingsnakes allied with Lampropeltis mexicana: Taxonomy and natural history.  Copeia 1962 (2): 291-300.

Hampton, N. 1976. Annotated checklist of the amphibians and reptiles of Travis County, Texas. Pp. 84-101 in A bird finding and naturalist's guide for Austin, Texas, area. Edited by E. Kutac and S. Caran. Austin, Tex.: Oasis Press.

Hibbard, C.W. and W.W. Dalquest. 1966. Fossils from the Seymour Formation of Knox and Baylor Counties, Texas, and their bearing on the late Kansan climate of that region. Contrib. Mus. Paleontol. Univ. Mich. 21: 1-66.

Holman, J.A. 1969a. Pleistocene amphibians from a cave in Edwards County, Texas. Tex. J. Sci. 21(1): 63-68.

Holman, J.A. 1969c. The Pleistocene amphibians and reptiles of Texas. Publ. Mich. State Mus. Biol. Ser. 1(6): 203-60.

Hubbs, C. and F.D. Martin. 1967. Bufo valliceps breeding in artificial pools. Southwest Nat. 12(1): 105-106.

Husack, J.F. 1998. Geographic distribution. Eleutherodactylus marnocki. Herpetol. Rev. 29(1): 48

Jameson, D.L. 1954. Social patterns in the leptodactylid frogs Syrrhophus and Eleutherodactylus. Copeia1954 (1): 36-38.

Jameson, D.L. 1955. The population dynamics of the cliff frog, Syrrhophus marnocki. Amer. Midl. Nat. 54(2): 342-381.

Lynch, J.D. 1964. Additional hylid and leptodactylid remains from the Pleistocene of Texas and Florida. Herpetologica
20(2): 141-142.

Lynch, J.D. 1970. A taxonomic revision of the leptodactylid frog genus Syrrhophus Cope. Univ. Kans. Publ. Mus. Nat. Hist. 20(1): 1-45.

Malone, J.H. 1998. Geographic distribution. Syrrhophus marnocki. Herpetol. Rev. 29(4): 247.

Marr, J.C. 1944. Notes on amphibians and reptiles from the central United States. Am. Midl. Nat. 32(2): 478-490.

McAlister, W. 1954. Natural history notes on the barking frog. Herpetologica 10(3): 197-199.

Merker, Gerald.  1999.   The Lovely Cliff Chirping Frog.  Reptile Hobbyist March, 1999: 44-48.   [Provides field observations, photos of S. marnocki (along with S. c. campi and S. guttilatus; erroneously states that the latter is "protected" by the state of Texas), as well as rare captive management techniques.  States that S. marnocki has not been bred in captivity -- TEL]

Milstead, W.W. 1960a. Supplementary notes on the herpetofauna of the Stockton Plateau. Tex. J. Sci. 12(3): 228-231.   [A follow-up to the 1950 paper, Milstead re-visited several of his Stockton Plateau sites in 1957 and 1959.   In 1957 the area was in the final stages of the great seven year drought which had begun in 1949.  In 1959, vegetative recovery from the drought was "remarkable."  In the persimmon-shinoak association, "Cliff frogs (Syrrhophus marnocki) were abundant during night collecting trips on the rim rocks in 1949, and their calls were frequently heard.   No individuals were seen or heard in 1957 or 1959." -- TEL]

Milstead, W.W. 1960b. Relict Species of the Chihuahuan Desert. Southwest. Nat. 5(2):75-88.   [Including what is now considered S. guttilatus, Milstead listed S. marnocki as one of fourteen relict species of the Chihuahuan Desert. "Collections in Big Bend National Park in 1957 and 1958 yielded several additional specimens and indicated that the population is still quite strong.  It appears to have disappeared from the Stockton Plateau, however." This last statement is puzzling and apparently based upon his failure to see or hear them during his return visits to his Stockton Plateau localities where they were formerly abundant at the surface (Milstead, W.W. 1960a) -- TEL]

Milstead, W.W. 1965b. Notes on some poorly known fossils of box turtles (Terrapene). Copeia 1965(4): 513-514.

Milstead, W.W., J.S. Meacham, and H. McClintock. 1950. The amphibians and reptiles of the Stockton Plateau in northern
Terrell County, Texas. Tex. J. Sci. 2(4): 543-562.

Mohr, C.E. 1939. I explore caves. Nat. Hist. 43(4): 190-204.

Mohr, C.E. 1948c. Unique animals inhabit subterranean Texas. Bull. Natl. Speleol. Soc. 10: 15-21, 88.

Mohr, C.E. 1958. Creatures of darkness. Illus. Lib. Nat. Sci. 1:606-617.

Morafka, D.J. 1977. A biogeographical analysis of the Chihuahuan desert through its herpetofauna. Biogeographica 9: 1-313. [Asserted that S. marnockii and S. guttilatus were conspecific based upon specimens intermediate between the two collected in the Sierra de Agava, east of Monclova, Nuevo Leon -- TEL]

Olson, R.E. 1958. An Inquiry Into the Status of the Texas Frogs of the Genus SyrrhophusBull. S.W. Tex. Herp. Soc. 1(1): 4  [Author states that except for "trivial" differences in size, almost no differences exist between S. marnocki and S. campi.   Comparing dorsal markings on thirteen preserved S. campi (collected in 1925 by R.D. Camp himself) in the Witte Memorial Museum collection with preserved S. marnocki, Olson found "no appreciable difference between the marking (such as it could be determined) on the preserved campi and the marnocki."   He also cites his collection of a topotypical S. marnocki with a rerticulate dorsal pattern (supposedly a character of the similar sized S. gaigeae (= S. guttilatus) as an indication that the incidence of the reticulate pattern might increase to the west in marnocki, making gaigeae at best a subspecies of S. marnocki.  Olson provides comparative measurements of a typical marnocki and his reticulate specimen from the same locality.  Line drawings of the dorsum of each specimen are also presented.  He concludes that: "There is much need for collecting aiming for Syrrhophus in the counties between Bexar and Cameron, and Uvalde to Brewster," clearly implying that the three taxa are conspecific. -- TEL]

Olson, R.E. 1959.   Herpetofaunal Notes On South-Central Texas Caves.  Bull. S.W. Tex. Herp. Soc. 2(1): 4-7.  [Author considers S. marnocki to be a "semi-permanent inhabitant" of caves, along with Eleutherodactylus latrans and most of the neotenic Euryceas.  These are described as herptiles with the "ability to carry on life in total darkness." He notes also that S. marnocki from caves are "faded lavender" in coloration, while surface dwelling specimens are "almost invariably leaf-green." -- TEL]

Owen, J.G. and J.R. Dixon. 1989. An ecogeographic analysis of the herpetofauna of Texas. Southwest Nat. 34(2): 165-180.

Parmley, D. 1988a. Additional Pleistocene amphibians and reptiles from the Seymour Formation, Texas. J. Herpetol. 22(1):

Parmley, D. 1988b. Middle Holocene herpetofauna of Klein Cave, Kerr County, Texas. Southwest. Nat. 33(3): 378-382.

Reddell, J.R. 1970. A checklist of the cave fauna of Texas. VI. Additional records of Vertebrata. Tex. J. Sci. 22(2-3): 139-158.

Reddell, J.R., and O. Knox. 1962. The caves of Bexar County. J. Tex. Speleol. Soc. 1(4): 1-38.

Schmidt, K.P. 1953. A checklist of North American amphibians and reptiles. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Smith, H.M. and H.K. Buechner. 1947. The influence of the Balcones Escarpment on the distribution of amphibians and
reptiles in Texas. Bull. Chi. Acad. Sci. 8(1): 1-16.

Smith, H.M., and D Chiszar. 1997. New records for amphibians and reptiles from Texas. Herpetol. Rev. 28(2): 99-100.

Smith, H.M., and J.R. Dixon. 1987. The amphibians and reptiles of Texas: A guide to records needed from Mexico. Bull. Md. Herpetol. Soc. 23(4): 154-157.

Smith, H.M., and O. Sanders. 1952a. Distributional data on Texas amphibians and reptiles. Tex. J. Sci. 4(2): 204-219.

Strecker, J.K. 1908b. A preliminary annotated list of the Batrachia of Texas. Proc. Biol. Soc. Wash. 21: 53-62.

Strecker, J.K. 1915.   Reptiles and amphibians of Texas.  Baylor Univ. Bull. 18(4): 1-82. [Called "Marnock's Frog," this species was given only the terse entry, "Known only from the type locality, Helotes, Bexar County, Texas." -- TEL]

Strecker, J.K. 1930. A catalogue of the amphibians and reptiles of Travis County, Texas. Contr. Baylor Univ. Mus. 23:1-16.

Strecker, J.K. 1933. Collecting at Helotes, Bexar County, Texas. Copeia 1933(2): 77-79.

Strecker, J.K. and W.J. Williams. 1927. Herpetological records from the vicinity of San Marcos, Texas, with distributional
data on the amphibians and reptiles of the Edwards Plateau region and central Texas. Contr. Baylor Univ. Mus. 12:1-16.

Tihen, J.A. 1960. Notes on late Cenozoic hylid and leptodactylid frogs from Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas. Southwest. Nat. 5(2): 66-70.

Turner, F.B. 1960. Post metamorphic growth in anurans. Am. Midl. Nat. 64(2): 327-238.

Turner, F.B. 1962. The demography of frogs and toads. Q. Rev. Biol. 37(4): 303-314.

Wauer, R. 1980. Naturalist's Big Bend. An introduction to the trees and shrubs, wildflowers, cacti, mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians, fish, and insects. College Station: Texas A&M University Press.

Wright, A.H., and A.A. Wright. 1938. Amphibians of Texas. Proc. Trans. Tex. Acad. Sci. 21(2): 5-44.

Wright, A.H., and A.A. Wright. 1949. Handbook of frogs and toads of the United States and Canada. Ithaca, N.Y.:
Comstock Publishing Co. 
[Perhaps the best (and wonderfully anecdotal) account of this species yet to be published, from notes made more than seventy years ago - TEL ]


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All text, images, sound bites, etc., are Tom Lott (2007) unless indicated otherwise.