Archives for 2014

Turtle Underpass Installation

drift fenceThe Haliburton Highlands Land Trust has completed phase II of The Turtle Road Mortality Project – installing the barrier fence.

Many thanks to the excellent volunteers who gave of their time – and muscles! – to get the fence in place. The area has since been re-seeded to help the natural vegetation grow in again for next spring.

The next two spring seasons will again see our intrepid volunteer Turtle Monitors out in the field,  monitoring at this site and two others, designated as “control” sites. The data collected during the next two turtle nesting seasons will help determine the effectiveness of this type of barrier fence at preventing turtles from being killed on our roads.

If you are interested in getting in on this project, and would like to volunteer some time next spring, just get in touch with us and we’ll put your name on our list! Get in touch with our office by phone at (705) 457-3700, or by email at program@haliburtonlandtrust.ca. You can also ask us to sign you up for our “Turtle Times” newsletter, a special edition e-newsletter that goes out to all of our turtle monitors and other folks interested in regular updates on the project.

 

Wild About Nature Magazine 2014

If you haven’t already picked up your copy of our annual Wild About Nature magazine, you can view and download yours here, in PDF format: WAN Magazine 2014 (approx. 10 Mb)

I Stop for Turtles!

IStopForTurtlesYou asked for them.

Now available from the Land Trust office: “I Stop for Turtles” window stickers!

$5 each

A Big Shout Out!

We were amazed at the outpouring of community and volunteer support for our recent efforts in monitoring for turtles at select sites around Haliburton County! During the months of May and June, the Haliburton Highlands Land Trust had volunteers monitoring turtle activity at up to eight different sites on roads across the county. This was the first part of a comprehensive study on Turtle Road Mortality funded by the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources Species at Risk proOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAgram.

The collective effort by 136 volunteers covered nearly 2,800 hours of observation, seven days a week throughout May and June. This incredible effort must make this one of the larger citizen science based research projects in recent history in Ontario, especially when considered within the context of intense effort over a very short period of time. While the committee is meeting to prepare for the next phase of this three year project, we want to pause to thank the volunteers involved to date. This group of extraordinary people came from all age groups and all walks of life. They stepped up and committed to offer their time in all weather conditions, and throughout the height of spring bug season. An amazing level of commitment from an amazing community!

Our monitors have witnessed more wild life in two months than many Canadians will see in a lifetime. This project has informed Haliburton residents of the challenges that these Species at Risk face on our roads. It is no longer socially acceptable to drive over a turtle for sport or fun. More and more people are stopping to help turtles cross busy roadways, even those who have never handled a turtle in their lives. Everyone seems to have a turtle story to tell, either a rescue, a near miss, or sightings of turtles nesting, basking, hatching, or just passing through. The Land Trust would love to hear yours!

 

While we are on the subject of gratitude, we would also like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who made this project possible; the Ministry of Natural Resources who funded it, the property owners and residents who allowed us to store equipment in their yards and driveways and sheds, the local media who covered our efforts, the many residents and visitors who stopped to show their support to our hardworking volunteers, and the community who has collectively become more aware of this vulnerable group of species in our midst!

 

For more information on this project, see:  Turtle Road Mortality Project

 

project partners:

The Haliburton Highlands Land Trust, Glenside Ecological Services, Ltd, U-Links Centre for Community Based Research

 

NEW VIDEO: Turtle Mortality in the Haliburton Highlands

Turtles in Haliburton County – and throughout Ontario – are at risk from extinction due to extremely high rates of road mortality. Females in particular are frequently killed on our highways, wiping out future generations of these special creatures. Listen to wildlife biologist Paul Heaven describe the risks that turtles face and learn about the efforts the community in the Haliburton Highlands is taking to ensure our roads are safer for turtles in the years to come.

Road Mortality from Haliburton Highlands Land Trust on Vimeo.

The turtles need our help. If you can volunteer some time to help out on our Turtle Road Mortality Species at Risk project, please get in touch. See this post for more information.