Oregon Spotted Frog release. Photo: Monica Pearson

In order to support existing Oregon Spotted Frog populations and create new ones, the Oregon Spotted Frog Recovery Team is coordinating a captive breeding program.

The Recovery Team began husbandry efforts with partners at Grouse Mountain and Mountain View Conservation Society in 1999, with eggs collected from the wild raised in captivity to improve survival through the fragile tadpole stage. The program continues to raise frogs, both captive-bred and a few wild-caught, at the Greater Vancouver Zoo with support from Wildlife Preservation Canada.

Since 2009, Vancouver Aquarium staff have been collecting Oregon Spotted Frog eggs to establish an aquarium-based assurance population, a part of the global Amphibian Ark. Between 2011 and 2013 over 10,000 tadpoles and juvenile frogs produced in the Aquarium’s care were released into suitable habitats to increase existing populations in the wild.

How does it work?

Eggs come from both captive and wild populations. They are kept in special enclosures where they grow from tiny tadpoles into young frogs that are then returned to their habitat. In 2014, close to 1,600 cultured tadpoles and juvenile frogs were released into natural habitats near established populations in the wild.