This group is found in Australia, Tasmania and New Guinea. A diverse group of frogs, ranging from 35 to 115 mm in snout-vent length. Many species are burrowers. Most genera have vertical pupils. Breeding males of Limnodynastes beat the egg mass into a foam. In Adelotus the males are large than females, and have a pair of sharp tusks at the tip of the lower jaw. Philoria lay direct-developing eggs in moist tunnels of soil or moss. Some species of Neobatrachus are almost identical to Scaphiopus of North America, both in appearance and in their fossorial habits. Notaden are also burrowers, but have extremely poorly ossified skulls, are mostly brightly colored, and secrete a white sticky skin toxin.
Limnodynastines are generally considered to be part of the family Myobatrachidae, along with the Myobatrachinae. However, Ford and Cannatella (1993) presented evidence indicating that no shared derived characters unite limnodynastines and myobatrachines, and further that their proposed relationship of Sooglossidae with Myobatrachinae would make the family Myobatrachidae paraphyletic. Rather than formally breaking up the Myobatrachidae, Ford and Cannatella (1993) simply dealt with the two subfamilies separately.
Some Miocene and Pleistocene fossils are known.
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University of Texas, Austin, Texas, USA
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Cannatella, David. 1995. Limnodynastinae. Version 01 January 1995 (under construction). http://tolweb.org/Limnodynastinae/16944/1995.01.01 in The Tree of Life Web Project, http://tolweb.org/