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Amphibian Ark to Protect Funky Frogs

Spotted salamanders, poison dart frogs and other color-splashed amphibians will leap aboard a Noah's Ark of sorts this week. Image: Zoos have bred hundreds of the penny-sized Kihansi spray toad, a species considered extinct in its wild habitat in an isolate river gorge in Tanzania. Credit: Julie Larsen Maher/Wildlife Conservation Society

The Wildlife Conservation Society has pledged its continuing participation in the Amphibian Ark, a global initiative to save hundreds of critically endangered amphibians from extinction through captive breeding in zoos.

On Leap Day, as part of the Amphibian Ark mission, the WCS's Bronx Zoo, the New York Aquarium and other city zoos raised awareness of the plight of amphibians as they welcomed the 2008 Year of the Frog.

At least 120 species of frogs, toads, salamanders and other amphibians have perished since 1980, and up to half of the remaining 6,000 species may soon succumb to extinction, according to WCS.
Habitat loss, climate change, pollution and diseases have all contributed to the dwindling amphibians.

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