Panama Golden Frog struggles to survive

Photo: Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute.
Editorial Dept. Voz de la Diaspora

In 2010 the species was declared by law a national symbol and the 14 August as National Golden Frog Day.

This beautiful species of tiny size but of great beauty and history, is an environmental and cultural symbol in Panama

According to reports from the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, the golden frog of Panama with its striking yellow and black colors, it is endemic in the center of the country, being discovered in the surrounding region of El Valle de Antón and Campana National Park west of the Panamanian capital.

Wild state

In places where the species lived, the quantity of specimens used to be abundant, but due to chytridiomycosis from 2006 has experienced a great decline, including the El Valle de Antón area.

The Panamanian golden frog was last observed in the wild in 2009.

Prior to the decline caused by the chytridiomycosis fungus epidemic, the habitat of this species was degrading due to urban development, agricultural and road, also this species was captured for the pet market.

Today the habitat of the golden frog continues to be subjected to a great impact by the use and changes in the lands and by the presence of the chytrid fungus.

In the year 2000, the Baltimore Zoo received approval to establish a captive adult population of the Panamanian Golden Frog (Atelopus zeteki) within the Golden Frog Project in the United States.

This population has grown to more than 1.000 adult individuals in more than 50 participating institutions in both the US and Canada, and is driven by AZA's plan for the survival of the species.

A small population of golden frogs has been established and raised in Panama.

The public display at the El Níspero Zoo and Botanical Garden found here is the only place in Panama where you can see golden frogs today.

The outlook for this captive population is excellent, says the Smithsonian Institution.