Spring Peepers And Salamanders Hit The Road

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DELAWARE WATER GAP -- This cold wet weather is the perfect time for spring peepers, also known as wood frogs.

The Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area is getting ready for its annual amphibian migration across a busy park road.

If you listen very closely, you can hear the sounds of springtime love. Peepers and salamanders getting ready to mate in the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area.

Rangers in the park say the weather is just right for the annual amphibian migration to begin.

"The cold temperatures keep the predators down plus the waters that they lay their eggs in keep down the reptiles like turtles and snakes that would find their eggs really tasty, like caviar," explained park ranger Miriam Hornstein.

Salamanders are just some of the animals that will cross River Road, mostly in the middle of the night.

Tom Schmitt lives nearby and works just down River Road at the Shawnee General Store. He's never caught a glimpse.

"I've never seen one myself. It's neat though, it's definitely neat seeing it though, just like in a picture or something like that."

As an added protection to make sure these critters cross River Road safely, park rangers will close the gate at dusk.

The park service feels protecting these animals is their duty; keeping them alive maintains the balance of the ecological cycle of the water gap.

"It's made a big difference in the survival of these amphibians. It also gives a chance for our public to come out and see these guys."

River Road will be closed to all vehicle traffic but this community doesn't mind one bit.  Park rangers say they'll be out with flashlights and blankets hoping to catch a "peep" at one of Mother Nature's wonders as long as the conditions remain just right.


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