The Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog was a once-common species inhabiting Yosemite’s meadows. Visitors once joyfully described their encounters with hundreds of frogs basking in the sun near high-elevation mountain lakes. Unfortunately, this keystone species is in danger of becoming extinct.

Park scientists reintroduced three frog populations to encourage genetic diversity and help ensure the health of the species. Tissue samples were analyzed to provide a deeper understanding of the frog’s genetic structure within Yosemite. Thanks to these efforts, wildlife managers were able to develop more effective conservation tools.

This project also supported youth engagement through a weeklong amphibian-conservation program for middle-school students, in addition to internship opportunities for older students.

With your help, we are preventing this unique species from disappearing, while engaging youth in wildlife conservation.

Partnering with Yosemite National Park, U.S. Geological Survey and Roland Knapp.

Heather McKinney

Aquatic Ecologist, Yosemite National Park

Project Notes

We know that if we restore these habitats for the frogs that we are going be able to increase the number of healthy, viable populations in Yosemite. Hopefully we can keep this species from going extinct.