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Royal Oak – About two dozen endangered frogs raised at the Detroit Zoo have been released into the wild.

The Detroit Zoological Society says 25 dusky gopher frogs were moved this month to the Ward Bayou Wildlife Management Area in southern Mississippi.

The frogs were bred at the zoo’s National Amphibian Conservation Center. The Zoological Society says the frogs once were abundant throughout Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama, but now nearly are extinct.

Dusky gopher frogs are black, brown or gray with dark spots and ridges along their backs. Their skin is covered with bumpy glands that secrete a protective coating that tastes bitter to predators.

The frog spends most of its life underground and travels to ponds only to breed.

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