FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Vancouver, B.C. – The Canadian Oregon Spotted Frog Recovery Team will be releasing approximately 100 juvenile Oregon Spotted Frogs on Thursday March 23 between 2:00 pm and 3:00 pm at a restored wetland in Agassiz, in the Fraser Valley.

The Oregon Spotted Frog is Canada’s most endangered amphibian, and is only found in British Columbia’s Fraser Valley. The species is federally listed as endangered. Histori- cally, Oregon Spotted Frogs occurred on the west coast of North America from north- ern California to Southern British Columbia. Due to habitat destruction, the introduc- tion of non-native species such as Eastern Canada’s bullfrog and pollution, their num- bers have declined by as much as 90 percent. Today they are no longer found in Cali- fornia, and there are only six known populations of Oregon Spotted Frog in British Co- lumbia, with less than 500 breeding females in Canada.

The juvenile frogs are reared in cooperation with the head-starting program of the Greater Vancouver and the Wildlife Preservation Canada and the captive breeding program of the Vancouver Aquarium. Between 2003 and 2017, approximately 15,000 captive-bred tadpoles and juvenile frogs have been released into suitable habitats to increase small existing populations in the wild.

The frogs will be released on a site previously inhabited by the species, and located near a remnant population of frogs. At this site, nearly 7,000 tadpoles, juvenile and adult frogs have been released between 2011 and 2016. Last year the Oregon Spotted Frog Team found 10 Oregon Spotted Frog egg masses there, an encouraging sign that released frogs are surviving and reproducing in the wild.

“The frogs that we will be releasing have spent the winter in our facilities so they could have a chance to grow bigger,” says Andrea Gielens, Project biologist. “These larger and more robust frogs will therefore have an increased chance of survival. The hope is that they will return in a couple of years to breed and help strengthen the overall Oregon Spotted Frog population.

The Oregon Spotted Frog Recovery Team, a diverse group of biologists and land man- agers, was formed in 1999 to coordinate efforts to conserve, manage and recover the Oregon spotted frog in Canada.

For more information and if you would like to attend the release event on Thursday March 23, please contact:

Isabelle Groc, Oregon Spotted Frog Outreach Coordinator Tel: 604.816.6903

Email: isabelle.groc@gmail.com

Website: www.preciousfrog.ca

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