The Dixie Valley Toad was discovered in the summer of 2017.
A recently discovered toad in Nevada is in need of emergency endangered species protections, according to the Center for Biological Diversity, which just petitioned the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to grant those protections.
The Center claims that the Dixie Valley toad (Bufo williamsi), which was just discovered last summer, is threatened by a proposed geothermal energy project in its habitat.
“This Dixie Valley toad was only recently discovered to be a unique species, and it’s already in grave danger,” said Jenny Loda, a Center attorney and scientist focused on protecting amphibians and reptiles. “The only place on Earth the toad calls home is threatened by this deeply irresponsible geothermal project.”
The Bureau of Land Management is currently reviewing the project. The Center says that the project would pump 46,000 acre feet of water out of the natural geothermal reservoir the toad relies on and could potentially drain the wetlands in which the toads call home.
According to the Center, the toad is only found in Churchill County, Nevada, in the western portion of the Dixie Valley Playa. It resides in the wetlands fed by the area’s thermal desert springs. Its range is limited to about 1,500 acres, the Center said, which makes the species vulnerable.
The Dixie Valley toad has large eyes and an olive-covered body with black spots and rust-colored warts along its black. The center says that it relies on constant flow of spring water for survival.
Say hello to the Dixie Valley toad, the first new toad species described in the United States in almost fifty years. This video, captured by Center staff, is the only known publicly available footage of the adorable amphibian. Dixie Valley toads make their home in a small area of the parched desert valley in central Nevada. Thermal springs bubble to the surface, creating verdant wetlands where the toads thrive. Unfortunately, a geothermal energy project has been proposed that could completely destroy the toad’s habitat. With your help, we’re fighting to save the toads. If you haven’t done so already, please take last-minute action – our opportunity to defend these toads expires at midnight tonight. Take action here: http://bit.ly/2s9Qhdy
Posted by Center for Biological Diversity on Friday, June 30, 2017
According to federal law, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service has 90 days to respond to the petition.