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3.18.11 Second Year of MRV Amphibian Monitoring Project
By: friendv3 (friendv3) 2011.03.21

<font size="3">In spring 2010, several trained volunteers were mobilized throughout the Mad River Valley to suspected amphibian crossing sites.  The volunteers were tasked with counting and recording the numbers of amphibians observed crossing roadways.  The information collected will help local conservation groups better understand the populations that exist, and how much mortality these populations are experiencing due to automobile traffic.  If necessary, measures can be taken to protect these populations as they migrate, such as the installation of signage or special temporary fences that herd critters to safe crossing areas (such as culverts).</font>

<font size="3">In 2010, volunteers observed species such as spotted salamanders, wood frogs, spring peepers and American toads crossing roads in Warren, Waitsfield and Fayston in large numbers.  Each year, these creatures hibernate in forest and fields, and begin to migrate en masse to their spring breeding pools during the first warmish, rainy spring nights (typically in early April).  More information is needed to better understand crossing patterns, thus volunteers will be mobilized again this spring to collect data.</font>

<font size="3">The Friends of the Mad River is spearheading the volunteer monitoring effort in partnership with the North Branch Nature Center and local Conservation Commissions.  There will be a volunteer training held on March 23 at 6:00 pm at the Waitsfield Elementary School.  Interested volunteers should contact Caitrin Noel for more information at 496-9127 or friends@madriver.com.</font>



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