USFWS proposes protections for Sierra Nevada amphibians

Posted: Apr 26, 2013

Written by

Louis Sahagun, Los Angeles Times/Greenwire
Yellow-legged frog

The Fish and Wildlife Service has proposed listing a species of frog and toad under the Endangered Species Act.

The Yosemite toad and Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog populations have decreased due to livestock grazing, fungal infections, pesticides and hungry non-native trout.

The proposal to save the amphibians comes with a plan to designate 2 million acres of critical habitat for the cold-loving creatures. The Yosemite toad lives 10,000 feet up in the Sierra Nevada range and hibernates under ice. It's known for its musical mating call.

"This is great news for the only native amphibians of the high Sierra Nevada, which have suffered massive declines in recent decades and disappeared from most of the places where they once lived," said Jeff Miller, a spokesman for the Center for Biological Diversity. "Their declines are a warning of the failing health of our High Sierra ecosystems."

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