I’m really late bringing this to you. I’ve narrated this blog entry dozens of times in my head, but wasn’t quite sure what to say and how to say it. But better late than never. Better some than none.
This year, 2008, is the Year of the Frog. No, it isn’t a new animal sign on the Chinese calendar. It is an animal sign of our planet course to peril. The Frog and other amphibian species are indicators of our ecosystem’s imbalance. And indicator species is any species (plant, animal, or microbe) who’s presence or absence, abundance or scarcity or whose health tells us something is good or bad in the environment. Frogs, toads and salamanders live in two worlds – the wet aquatic world and the drier terrestrial world. So balance between these two ecosystems is very important for these species. For several years ago, some ecologists noticed that frogs and toads in some places were very sick. Some would not develop past the tadpole stage, some died young, and other developed abnormally having too many or too few legs. Plus, more recently, amphibians have been declining. Frogs are dying! What’s a spring or summer evening without the chorus of frogs?
Learn more about Frogs and why they matter at the official website, which is sponsored by Clorox Bleach. Educators and after-school leaders, here is a link to lesson plans (thanks to Discovery Education) about Frogs and Conservation. Both are great websites, so I encourage you to explore them and see what activities you can take you pollywogs. Pun intended.
The Panamanian golden frog