Amphibian Ecology & Road Rescue Training

Each spring salamanders and frogs migrate by the thousands from forests to wetlands, sometimes crossing busy roads at great peril to themselves. On March 15, 2022, Pete Kerby-Miller, teacher-naturalist at North Branch Nature Center, held an audience of more than a dozen people spell-bound with an online presentation about the amazing annual trek that amphibians take from their winter hibernating areas to their feeding and breeding areas. These intrepid creatures travel significant distances on rainy nights as the temperatures rise above freezing in March and April.

In some places, their annual migration has been made treacherous by roads they must cross — roads with fast moving cars and trucks! Pete described how people can assist them in their safe crossing of high-mortality areas and assist the Nature Center in the collection of important migration data used by town planners and ecologists. You are invited to listen to a recording of his presentation at: https://youtu.be/FB0Gu6Bhut4

Since spring 2019, Cornwall volunteers have been monitoring two stretches of road on West Street. On rainy evenings when temperatures have stayed above 40 degrees, escorts have been out slowing traffic and ensuring the safe passage of hundreds of salamanders and frogs. If you would like to learn more about these escort teams and possibly help in Cornwall during the spring migration period, contact CC member Mary Dodge at mdodge@middlebury.edu