In the nick of time - saving the yellow-spotted bell frog

Thought to be extinct in the wild for over thirty years, the spectacular Critically Endangered yellow-spotted bell frog was rediscovered in a creek in the Yass area in 2010.

Yellow-spotted bell frog (Litoria castanea)

The following year, the Office of Environment and Heritage and Taronga Zoo frog experts collected tadpoles from this small population as an insurance measure. This turned out to be one of the most important decisions ever made by our threatened species experts because the following year the wild population was devastated by an unprecedented La Nina flood that wiped out most of the important habitat for this frog.

After a lot of hard work by Taronga Zoo and nervous waiting, the captive bell frogs finally bred after nearly seven years. Their offspring were returned to the wild in autumn 2018, much to the joy and relief of everyone involved in this amazing journey to bring back a species from the brink of extinction.