AGFC releases Ozark hellbenders in restoration effort - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

AGFC releases Ozark hellbenders in restoration effort

Ozark hellbender (Source: AGFC via Twitter) Ozark hellbender (Source: AGFC via Twitter)
(KAIT) -

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission is trying to bring back the population of an endangered and rare aquatic salamander.

Recently, the AGFC released more than 100 Ozark hellbenders into the Eleven Point River.

The animals came as a result of a breeding program at the St. Louis Zoo. 

According to the commission, the Ozark hellbender was placed on the federal endangered species list in 2011. The salamanders had a robust population in the Spring River as of about 30 years ago but almost disappeared in the same river over the past 15 years.

There is no exact cause of the population decline, according to the AGFC, but they suspect a loss of habitat to be the main cause.

To read more about the Ozark hellbender, click here.

On Twitter Thursday, the AGFC released a video of the salamander being reintroduced back to the wild:

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