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Tag: turtles (Page 1 of 3)

Turtle crossing: how to help injured turtles on Ontario roads

Credit: Gabriel Esler; CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Seven of Ontario’s eight turtle species are provincially at risk. By helping a turtle cross the road, you contribute to their conservation. But what if you spot a turtle that’s injured, or possibly dead? Check out our Q & A to help you take action during your travels.

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How you can help turtles cross the road

Credit: James Paterson

Many of us have seen turtles on the road in May and June – they look like dark, round speed bumps or tire pieces. Perhaps you have swerved your car around one, or stopped to help one safely across the road. Why are roads such a major threat to turtle survival and how can you help?

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Mind the Gap

Blue-spotted salamander Joe Crowley

blue-spotted salamander, credit: Joe Crowley

Support the Ontario Reptile and Amphibian Atlas by submitting sightings in underreported areas

The onset of spring is an exciting time of year for outdoor enthusiasts as the veil of winter is lifted from our wetlands, forests and meadows.

If you enjoy the wonders of nature, there are many reasons to get outside this spring. From the emergence of the iconic, ephemeral trillium that carpets the floor of deciduous forests to the return of songbirds from their wintering grounds.

But one spring phenomenon often goes unnoticed; the awakening of reptiles and amphibians. You can find these hidden, secretive creatures occupying a wide range of habitats. Turn over a log and you may find a common eastern red-backed salamander, or if you’re lucky, a spotted salamander, one of Ontario’s largest salamanders.

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Mind the data gap

Eastern newt photo by Joe Crowley.

Eastern newt photo by Joe Crowley.

For decades, biologists across Ontario have been collecting data on amphibians and reptiles, collectively referred to as herpetofauna. Today these records are included in the Ontario Reptile and Amphibian Atlas (ORAA).

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What’s up with the snakes?

Eastern ribbonsnake photo by Joe Crowley.

Eastern ribbonsnake photo by Joe Crowley.

Thirty years ago, hundreds of naturalists, biologists and outdoorsmen in Ontario began archiving hundreds of thousands of reptile and amphibian observations. Twenty-five years later, Ontario Nature continued and expanded that data collection to the entire province.

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