Got a Soft Spot for Slimy Things? These Frogs Need Your Help
We had our first taste of spring weather last Sunday, March 6th, when temperatures creeped up into the low 60s. That means warmer days are just around the corner. And with warmer days means frogs and salamanders will soon be awakening from their winter slumbers in search of ponds and wetlands.
In Facebook post from the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation, they urged drivers to be wary of migrating frogs and salamanders on the roads. The DEC instituted an Amphibian Migrations and Road Crossings Project in 2008 to help raise awareness on amphibian road mortality. Hundreds of volunteers have donated their time throughout the years to help move these important creatures across the road.
"The timing of amphibian migration to vernal pools for breeding is weather-dependent. Large numbers of spotted salamanders, wood frogs, and other pool-breeding species are often on the move on the first warm, rainy nights in March, after the ground has thawed and night air temperatures remain above 40° F."
Spotted salamanders, Jefferson-blue spotted salamander complex and wood frogs often choose rainy nights during March and April to make their way across the road to sources of water. Why? Well, to get it on, of course. Winter hibernations are lonely, and those eggs aren't going to lay themselves.
So what can you do to help? The Amphibian Migrations and Road Crossings Project is looking for volunteers to find migration hot spots, record traffic and weather conditions, and help the little critters cross safely. For more information, visit their website.
With so many amphibians crossing the road, it's easy to see where the concept of the classic arcade game Frogger came from.