Chiricahua leopard frog (Lithobates chiricahuensis)
Where Listed: WHEREVER FOUND
A leopard frog with a distinctive color pattern of small, raised, cream-colored spots on the thigh against a dark background with relatively rough skin on the back and sides, dorsolateral folds that are interrupted and deflected medially, and often green on the head and back. A distinctive call (a snore of 1 to 2 seconds duration) also separates this species from other leopard frogs
- States/US Territories in which the Chiricahua leopard frog, Entire is known to or is believed to occur: Arizona , New Mexico
- US Counties in which the Chiricahua leopard frog, Entire is known to or is believed to occur: View All
- USFWS Refuges in which the Chiricahua leopard frog, Entire is known to occur:
Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge, Leslie Canyon National Wildlife Refuge
- Countries in which the the Chiricahua leopard frog, Entire is known to occur: Mexico
- Additional species information
|Status||Date Listed||Lead Region||Where Listed|
|06/13/2002||Southwest Region (Region 2)||Entire|
» Federal Register Documents
|06/14/2000||65 FR 37343 37357||Proposal to List the Chiricahua Leopard Frog as Threatened With a Special Rule|
|06/13/2002||67 FR 40790 40811||Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Listing of the Chiricahua Leopard Frog (Rana chiricahuensis); Final Rule|
|Date||Title||Plan Action Status||Plan Status|
|03/14/2007||Chiricahua Leopard Frog Recovery Plan||View Implementation Progress||Final|
|Date||Citation Page||Title||Document Type|
|04/12/2006||71 FR 18767||Notice of Availability of the Draft Recovery Plan for the Chiricahua Leopard Frog||
|06/04/2007||72 FR 30820 30821||Chiricahua Leopard Frog Recovery Plan||
|04/23/2007||72 FR 20134 20136||5-Year Reviews of 24 Southwestern Species||
|01/28/2011||Chiricahua Leopard Frog 5-Year Review|
» Critical Habitat
|Date||Citation Page||Title||Document Type||Status|
|03/20/2012||77 FR 16324 16424||Listing and Designation of Critical Habitat for the Chiricahua Leopard Frog; Final Rule||Final Rule||Final designated|
|03/15/2011||76 FR 14125 14207||Listing and Designation of Critical Habitat for the Chiricahua Leopard Frog; Proposed Rule||Proposed Rule||Not Required|
To learn more about critical habitat please see http://ecos.fws.gov/crithab
» Conservation Plans
|HCP Plan Summaries|
|Pima County Multi-Species Conservation Plan, under Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan|
|SHA Plan Summaries|
|Arizona Statewide SHA for Chiricahua leopard frog|
|Leslie Canyon Watershed SHA (Barboot/99-Ranch)|
|Malpai Borderlands Group SHA|
» Life History
Permanent waters in ponds, tanks, cienegas (wet meadows), and small streams provide habitat. Where water is not permanent, adult frogs may persist but reproduction is likely not successful. Habitats with a variety of plants, depths, in-water structure, and other complexities are desired. Currently restricted to springs, livestock tanks, and streams in upper portion of watersheds that are free from nonnative predators or where marginal habitat for nonnative predators exists. Critical habitat is designated for 10,346 acres in Apache, Cochise, Gila, Graham, Greenlee, Pima, Santa Cruz, and Yavapai counties in Arizona; and Catron, Hidalgo, Grant, Sierra, and Socorro counties in New Mexico (77 FR 16324).
Tadpoles eat vegetative matter, small diatoms, bacteria, and other small foods. Metamorphs and adults will eat aquatic or terrestrial invertebrates and small fish, frogs, or toads.
Movement / Home Range
Frogs may form a metapopulation between nearby (within 5 miles) habitats with adults moving between sites via connecting waters or overland during seasonal rainfall events. Tadpoles may be washed into new habitats by higher streamflows after rains. Typically found between 3,281 and 8,890 feet of elevation.
Eggs are laid in masses in March through June at elevations below 5900 feet Hatching occurs within a week or two and tadpoles remain in the water. Metamorphosis may occur in 3 to 9 months depending on the temperature of the site and in some sites, tadpoles may overwinter. Adult status is dependent on size rather than age. Frogs are generally inactive from November through February; however, this is regulated by temperature and warmer sites may have more winter actvity.
These frogs are particularly vulnerable to predation and competition by non-native fish, bullfrogs, and crayfish in their habitats. The spread of a chytridomycete skin fungi to leopard frog habitats has also decimated populations. The fungi can be spread by animals like bullfrogs moving between waters, by equipment that can transport infected water between sites, or by vehicles moving between sites with mud or plant material from infected sites on the vehicle. Habitats are at risk from watershed erosion causing sedimentation that reduces forage opportunities, smothers egg mases, or fills in the small tanks where most frog populations remain.
» Other Resources
NatureServe Explorer Species Reports -- NatureServe Explorer is a source for authoritative conservation information on more than 50,000 plants, animals and ecological communtities of the U.S and Canada. NatureServe Explorer provides in-depth information on rare and endangered species, but includes common plants and animals too. NatureServe Explorer is a product of NatureServe in collaboration with the Natural Heritage Network.
ITIS Reports -- ITIS (the Integrated Taxonomic Information System) is a source for authoritative taxonomic information on plants, animals, fungi, and microbes of North America and the world.
FWS Digital Media Library -- The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's National Digital Library is a searchable collection of selected images, historical artifacts, audio clips, publications, and video.