Environment

Wildlife officials warn of invasive frogs in Washington

About 300 frogs have been caught
April 28, 2022 at 7:41 a.m.

By ASSOCIATED PRESS
CDN wire services

ISSAQUAH — An invasive species is consuming and competing with native species in western Washington, including salmon.

Scientists have spotted African clawed frogs in Issaquah, Lacey and Bothell, KING5 reported. The frogs were initially brought into the United States to be used in pregnancy tests and later became pets, said state wildlife scientist Max Lambert.

Although Washington made it illegal to own them, some still do. Some who have decided not to keep the frogs, and released them into ponds and streams. As officials began looking into the issue, they discovered hundreds of frogs.

"These are considered one of the worst invasive species on earth," Lambert said. "They'll eat a lot of native insects, which are good forage food for our fishes and our amphibians, they will eat tadpoles of our native salamanders, and they'll eat fish. We looked at some of their stomach contents - and they're full of baby fish."

People working to restore salmon populations fear the frogs will infringe on that progress.

Since Trout Unlimited began trapping in January, the organization has caught about 300 frogs, Rebecca Lavier said. Around half of those have been found in the past few weeks. They believe it's just a fraction of the population.

Have a news tip? Email newstips@cascadiadaily.com or Call/Text 360-922-3092

Sign up for our weekly e-newsletter

Get our top stories delivered to your inbox each week

* indicates required

Latest Stories


GOVERNMENT
Whatcom PUD Commissioner Murphy withdraws from race
Two newcomers left on this fall's PUD ballot

TRANSPORTATION
Historic Plover Ferry to reopen on May 27
Ferry reopening after two seasons of closure due to COVID-19 restrictions

COMMUNITY
Beer Prom returns to support Lydia Place
Local breweries collaborate on new brews for charity

GARDENING
Outback Farm celebrates 50-year anniversary
Campus farm place for experimentation, learning

RACING
WWU Racing shows off new all-electric Formula SAE car
Viking 63 will begin competition in June