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Cleanup of Tiburon marsh halted on sighting of rare state frog

Work to remove an estimated 750 tons of cattails and regrade the silt basin of Railroad Marsh, which sits behind Tiburon Town Hall and the Belvedere-Tiburon Library, has been put on hold after a biologist on site spotted a California red-legged frog, a threatened species. (Nick Shorten Jr. / For The Ark)

Maintenance work at Railroad Marsh came to an abrupt halt last month after a rare species of frog was spotted on site, and Tiburon officials said it could take a year for work to resume.

Tiburon Engineering Manager David Eshoo said the project to clear 750 tons of cattails from the pond behind Town Hall and the Belvedere-Tiburon Library was about half finished when a biologist spotted a California red-legged frog, a species listed as threatened under the federal Endangered Species Act.

“We only found one, but now we have to inform the Department of Fish and Wildlife that we may injure or kill red-legged frogs,” Eshoo said.

The town will now need permits from that agency to continue the work, a process that could take up to 14 months and cost an extra $20,000, he said, adding that money for the project, which was budgeted at $330,000, has already been appropriated.

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