A serious situation
In recent years, dozens of species of amphibians have vanished—believed to be extinct—and hundreds more species are expected to become extinct in the next decade. From loss of habitat through deforestation to the arrival of a deadly fungus, amphibian wildlife is in a state of crisis. As part of its overall commitment to conservation, The Toledo Zoo is dedicated to stem the loss of amphibian species throughout the world.
What Can You Do?
• Consider giving to our Conservation Today program, which uses your funds for special programs that help endangered animals, including amphibians.
• Visit Amphibian Ark for more information on how you can help.
On Target in Tanzania—helping the Kihansi spray toad
Our work with the Kihansi spray toad is a highlight of our conservation efforts. This tiny toad is believed to be extinct in the wild. In an effort to save them, about 500 specimens were transferred to a handful of zoos around the U.S. While the populations foundered at most other zoos, The Toledo Zoo and the Bronx Zoo are happy to report that their populations are flourishing. Through these recovery efforts, we now have reason to be optimistic about the future of this unique species. The spray toad is expected to be reintroduced into its native habitat soon.
The Toledo Zoo is currently the only place where the Kihansi spray toad is on exhibit. You can visit them in Amazing Amphibians, located in the Museum of Science.
Species Survival Plans
The Toledo Zoo also participates in Species Survival Plans (SSPs) to help ensure the future of the Wyoming toad and the Puerto Rican crested toad. SSPs are cooperative breeding and conservation programs recommended by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums that are crucial to protecting species whose existence in the wild is threatened or endangered. The Puerto Rican crested toad is threatened as its habitat is lost to development and it faces increased competition for food, and the Wyoming toad is endangered due to habitat loss and susceptibility to the chytrid fungus.
Amphibian Conservation Center
The chytrid fungus also threatens the future of many species of amphibian throughout Central and South America. The Toledo Zoo is assisting in a project to stem the loss of amphibian species throughout this region. In El Valle, Panama, a number of U.S. zoosare participating in efforts to conserve the species of frogs that are found in that region. By bringing the threatened animals to an Amphibian Conservation Center, we can keep them from harm, releasing them back into the wild once the fungus has subsided.
The Toledo Zoo encourages you to help stop this amphibian crisis, through donations or by contributing to the Coins for Conservation fountain at Westfield Franklin Park. A little change can make a big change for amphibians!