New protections set for Twain's jumping frog

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March 17, 2010 6:57:29 AM PDT
After 10 years of revisions, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is publishing a final report designating habitat for the California red-legged frog that inspired Mark Twain's famous story.

The new rules released Tuesday set aside 1.6 million acres for the threatened frog, down from the 4 million originally proposed in 2001.

One previous attempt to establish rules was overturned by a lawsuit, another by malfeasance.

Fish and Wildlife Service spokesman Al Donner called the new rule the "biologically sound middle ground" between the original plan and one released in 2006 that set aside just more than 450,000 acres.

The frog species is best known for being featured in Twain's short story, "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County," published in 1865.