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Direct Development in Eleutherodactylus coqui (Anura: Leptodactylidae): A Staging Table
Daniel S. Townsend and Margaret M. Stewart
Vol. 1985, No. 2 (May 3, 1985), pp. 423-436
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1444854
Page Count: 14
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The Puerto Rican frog Eleutherodactylus coqui has terrestrial reproduction and direct development, as is the case for all known species of this large, neotropical group. To facilitate field measurements of embryonic age in E. coqui, a staging table was developed based on changes in the external morphology of embryos. Pre-hatching development was divided into 15 stages. Principal diagnostic features include formation of external gills, progressive pigmentation of the eyes, growth and differentiation of the limbs, development of endolymphatic calcium deposits, expansion of a pigmented body wall, growth of a large, vascularized tail and changes in embryonic behavior. We have used the table to stage the eggs of E. antillensis and E. portoricensis, related Puerto Rican species. A literature review suggests that our table may be useful as a general staging scheme for the genus.