RARE LEOPARD FROG: FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — A rare frog has been found beyond its known range in the Southwest. A U.S. Forest Service volunteer recently photographed a Chiricahua leopard frog in an earthen stock tank near the town of Camp Verde in central Arizona. Biologists later confirmed that at least 10 of the frogs were living there. The aquatic frogs were thought to be only in eastern Arizona, western New Mexico and northern Mexico but historically were more widespread. The frogs’ numbers have declined because of habitat loss, disease and predators. Audrey Owens of the Arizona Game and Fish Department said the frogs could have moved into lower elevations in Camp Verde because they were seeking protected habitat or warmer temperatures that guard them from fungal disease.
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