The Oregon spotted frog (Rana pretiosa) was once abundant in the Pacific Northwest, found in wetlands and lowlands spanning from southwestern BC down to the northern tip of California. However, in 1999 COSEWIC (the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada) declared the Oregon spotted frog an endangered species. This status is due to the habitat loss or reconfiguration (i.e. drainage of wetlands, converting habitat into agricultural lands), introduction of non-native species such as bullfrogs and canary reed grasses. The Oregon spotted frog population is now down 80% from its historical numbers. The only known active populations exist in a few scattered, shallow ponds in the Lower Fraser Valley, Puget Sound and Cascade Mountain range in Washington State, and select areas in Oregon.
Oregon spotted frog is medium-sized reaching a length of 4 - 10 cm from snout to vent. Adult females are slightly larger than their male counterparts. Similar in appearance to Columbia spotted frogs and the red-legged frogs, these shy amphibians range in colour from green to reddish-brown and have obvious light-centred black spots on the head and back.
For over a decade the zoo has participated in rearing the critically endangered Oregon Spotted Frogs. To increase the last remaining populations of this species in BC, these frogs are released annually into suitable habitats of the Fraser Valley.
We are working with an Oregon spotted frog Recovery Team to give this amphibian a greater chance of species survival. Eventually, our frogs will be released into previously existing OSF habitats or newly created wetlands.
To learn more about Oregon Spotted Frog recovery team and the other partners involved please visit the following sites: