Day 2 of 41, bringing you the California State Symbols: the California red-legged frog

In this challenging time, we are going to bring you one State symbol every day to remind us in California how we are connected by more than this state of emergency.

Today is day two of our 41-day tour through the state symbols, working through them alphabetically (after beginning with our State Song).

  1. State Song: I Love You, California
  2. State Amphibian: California Red-Legged Frog

Perhaps best known for its probable appearance in Mark Twain’s short story “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County,” the California red-legged frog (Rana draytonii) is the largest native frog in the western United States and is almost exclusive to California.

During the Gold Rush, miners ate nearly 80,000 frogs per year. Recent development and competition from invasive species have also been hard on the California red-legged frog. It has lost 70 percent of its former habitat range, and in 1996, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service listed it as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act. It is now found primarily in coastal regions from Marin County to northern Baja California.