Corroboree frog eggs released into Kosciuszko NP
THE CRITICALLY ENDANGERED southern corroboree frog has an extra chance at success after a batch of 150 captive-bred eggs were released into a protected zone in Kosciusko National Park.
The small frog with striking yellow stripes on its black body has been decimated by the fatal amphibian chytrid fungus, which has reduced the population from an estimated several hundred thousand individuals to just 20 since the 1980s.
The first batch of eggs were released into Kosciuszko National Park in 2012 using eggs that were captively bred at Taronga Zoo.
“We are still assessing the effectiveness of this new approach, but we are very happy with the initial results,” said Dr David Hunter, threatened species officer at the NSW Office of Environment and Health (OEH).
“The juvenile and adult frogs from the first enclosure are in good condition, and there has been successful breeding with the production of viable eggs.”
Southern corroboree frogs have a fighting chance
Captive breeding colonies of the little frog, have been established at Taronga Zoo, the Amphibian Research Centre, Melbourne Zoo and Healesville Sanctuary.
In 2010, 47 eggs were placed at locations in Kosciuszko National Park, and in 2011 another 244 were deposited. IN 2012, 819 eggs were released over several sites.
The most recent batch of 150 eggs were introduced into a quarantined area in a remote part of its natural sphagnum bog habitat in Kosciuszko National Park.
Our longer term aim is to help the southern corroboree frog also achieve recovery,” said David.
The southern corroboree frog, which is poisonous, has no natural predators, so if individuals make it to adulthood without succumbing to the fungus, their outlook is good.