Frogs and toads were a part of our childhoods. We would chase them, sometimes capturing them for pets. Most children are fascinated by these jumping critters. Through fairytales they became fused in our collective imaginations. What if one day they disappeared?
Amphibian Chytrid Fungus
Today all amphibians are under threat by the deadly chytrid fungus. The chytrid fungus is a disease that affects the skin, an important organ that helps amphibians drink and breathe. Once it is introduced to a habitat, it can wipe out entire species in a few months. It is estimated that nearly half the world’s amphibians may disappear within a human lifetime.
The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore is one of many organizations dedicated to stopping this disease. They developed Project Golden Frog. The Panamanian golden frog has been nearly decimated by the chytrid fungus. The Maryland Zoo has been working hard to save this little frog—actually it’s a true toad.
To highlight their efforts, the Maryland Zoo created the Panamanian Golden Frog Exhibit. It features 14 golden frogs in a simulated habitat. There is even an electronic educational kiosk to help guests learn more. Did you know? The male golden frog’s mating call cannot be heard over fast-moving water, so they must wave their arms to attract females. They use their own semifore signals to communicate.
Coloring and Craft Activities
Amphibians are vital to us for many reasons according to Amphibian Ark. Acting as both predator and prey, amphibians help sustain natural balance. They are helpful by eating insects, preventing damage to crops and spreading disease. Medical research on amphibian skin may help in the fight against human diseases.
A great way for kids to become interested in amphibian conservation is through art. Listed below are links to free frog and toad craft/coloring pages. Enjoy your day!
Coloring Pages for Kids – Free Frog Coloring Pages
Coloring.ms – Frog Themed Coloring Pages
Crayola.com – Frog Coloring Pages
Frog Life Cycle – Frog Coloring Pages
ColorMountain.com – Frog Coloring Pages
DTLK Crafts for Kids – Frog Activities
Enchanted Learning.com – Frog Crafts
Danielle’s Place – Frog Craft and Craft Activities
TLC Family – Frog Crafts and Activities
About.com – Frog Crafts