Love the sound of the peepers in the spring? Enjoy seeing the brilliant red eft crawling through your neighborhood? Volunteer to help ensure they keep singing and crawling for generations to come!
Each year, amphibians migrate en masse from forest and field to spring breeding ponds. Sometimes their journey involves crossing a roadway, which can result in high mortality and declines in populations.
Anecdotally, naturalists have noted several places in the Valley where amphibian populations suffer great losses due to roadway mortality. In an effort to characterize and quantify the extent of this problem in the Mad River Valley, the Friends of the Mad River is partnering with the Fayston Natural Resource Committee to organize a volunteer monitoring and crossing project.
This spring, in early April when temps rise and the first warmish rains fall, trained volunteers will be sent to important sites throughout the Valley and will count and assist amphibians as they make their way across roadways to their spring breeding pools. Data will be shared with local planners and will inform potential future infrastructure improvements.
Want to help? There will be a volunteer training on March 31st at 6:30pm at the General Wait House in Waitsfield. Staff from the North Branch Nature Center, who are organizing a regional amphibian monitoring and crossing effort, will be assisting with the training.
There is a minimal time commitment for volunteers: you only need to be available for a few evenings this spring, however the exact timing is unknown as it is weather dependent. Please contact Caitrin Noel at email@example.com or 496-9127 for more information or to sign up.
For More Information...
Mad River Valley Amphibian Monitoring Project
North Branch Nature Center Amphibian Monitoring Program
Image credit: North Branch Nature Center