ATLANTA (AP) — Zoo Atlanta officials say a rare tree frog whose species is now believed to be extinct in the wild had to be euthanized after a decline in his health.
The Rabbs’ fringe-limb tree frog was believed to be one of the last two of its kind left on Earth. Zoo officials said Friday the frog was euthanized to prevent suffering and to preserve genetic material for research.
The species was identified by Zoo Atlanta herpetology curator Joseph Mendelson during a 2005 trip to Panama. Mendelson says a pathogen known as the amphibian chytrid fungus has been killing off frog species in the wild.
The last known member of the Rabbs’ fringe-limbed tree frog species lives at the Atlanta Botanical Garden.