Last year the West Vincent Township Environmental Advisory Council (EAC) and many volunteers from the neighborhood and beyond helped protect the amphibians which cross Hollow Road near Horseshoe Trail during their annual migration from the woods where they live to the wetlands where they breed.
The migrating animals that we saw in 2016 were wood frogs, spring peepers, American toads, tree frogs, a green frog, a pickerel frog, a leopard frog an unidentified frog, and two four-toed salamanders. We were out to protect them two evenings, 2/23. 3/3. They tend to move on only three or four evenings a year—rainy, the first thaw, miserable weather, usually from the end of February to early March. Sometimes it is easy to predict the evenings of the crossings; sometimes it is not. We have help predicting this from other experienced groups.
The EAC consulted with both Kim White (who has organized such a volunteer program in North Coventry for the last four years) and Police Chief Mike Swininger (to find out how to be both safe and effective). We will use the township road barricades and protective vests.
The toads didn’t migrate with the other amphibians and not in the rain; because they gave us no notice, we were only able to help on the way back from the wetlands.
The Township Supervisors have approved the following plan. We will close Hollow Road from Horseshoe Trail to the Zuber Mill (except for the residents of that stretch) from dark (roughly 6 pm) to 9 or 10 pm. We will send letters to all Hollow Road residents from Horseshoe Trail to the intersection with Flowing Springs Road. We will have yard signs ahead of the events to give warning of likely road closure.
Because we will close the road, we will be able to protect the amphibians without moving them in the wrong direction or disrupting the protective covering on their skin.
Contact Harriet Stone (610 469 9050 or firstname.lastname@example.org) with questions or to volunteer.