Target: Mark Sattelberg, Field Supervisor of Wyoming’s U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Goal: Save the Wyoming toad by supporting the proposed plan to establish a conservation area
The Wyoming toad, known as the most endangered amphibian in America, just might have a fighting chance. A proposed project seeks to create a conservation area strictly for the survival of this unique species. The toad only lives in Albany County, Wyoming, so protecting its habitat would give the species more of a chance of survival. Now is the comment period to let the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) know that this toad is important.
The Wyoming toad is currently sustained in captivity. The population started to decline in the 1970’s and officially made the list of endangered species in 1984. Although many reasons factor into the decline of this rare toad, the main reason is because of the chytrid fungus, which infects amphibians.
The proposed conservation plan would include the toad’s natural habitat of floodplains, ponds, and short grasses, and occupy approximately 186,000 acres. If accepted, the USFWS will begin negotiations with landowners who live in Wyoming toad habitat. Landowners could either sell their property to the USFWS or establish a conservation easement—a set of rules that the landowner will have to abide by to protect the toads’ habitat and ensure the species’ safety. The proposed conservation approach is to establish five breeding populations throughout the assigned area.
Since the Wyoming toad is not self-sustaining in the wild, the conservation area could be groundbreaking for this struggling species. Captive breeding programs have supported these toads for 20 years, but a protected habitat would drastically increase their chances of survival in the wild.
By signing this petition, you are urging the USFWS to approve the plan to establish thousands of acres of land for the success of the rare Wyoming toad.
Dear Mr. Sattelberg,
The Wyoming toad’s success will depend on its survival in the wild. The proposed conservation plan is the only solution to see this species thrive outside of captivity. This conservation effort could completely change the Wyoming toad population forever. Please approve the effort to acquire suitable toad habitat to rid the Wyoming toad from the title of “America’s most endangered amphibian.”
This knobby skinned, two-inch long critter has struggled with population numbers ever since its decline in the 1970’s. Captive breeding programs have encouraged population growth since 1994, 10 years after the Wyoming toad was listed as endangered. I truly value the conservation efforts put forth by the USFWS and urge you to approve the land acquisition and conservation program so this precious toad can finally and freely roam the grasslands and swamps of Albany county.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: USFWS Mountain-Prairie via Flickr