Puerto Rico’s Coquí May Get Protection as Endangered Species

The coquí llanero, Puerto Rico’s smallest tree frog, may reportedly receive protection from U.S. environmental officials, Fox News Latino reports. They announced this week that they would like to list it as an endangered species.

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According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the coquí llanero has a call with such a high-pitched frequency that it can barely be heard. The agency reportedly said it is proposing to designate more than 600 acres of wetlands in the northern part of the island as the species' critical habitat. The majority of that property is managed by the U.S. Department of Defense and has been tagged for residential development and the rest is managed by the local government.

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An endangered species status would make the coquí llanero illegal to kill, harm or capture the frog, which was discovered in 2005 and is one of 17 coquí species. Its eggs have been found only on the bulltongue arrowhead plant.

The coquí llanero is found only in the wetlands, and if the designation is awarded, the Puerto Rico government and U.S. Defense Department would have to consult with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service before any development is approved, the agency said.

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