Keene, NH, City Roads To Be Blocked So Salamanders Can Cross

Amphibous assault
A volunteer holds one of several spotted salamanders that were assisted across North Lincoln Street last year.
Keene braces for salamanders
By David P. Greisman
Sentinel Staff
Published: Saturday, April 04, 2009
Salamander season is back, and that means a section of a Keene neighborhood might temporarily close to traffic at night while they and other amphibians migrate.

This year, the crossing at North Lincoln Street and Jordan Road may be blocked by Keene police using folding barricades to protect the amphibians and the people there to guide them.

“We’re talking about two roads that are lightly traveled in late parts of the night,” said Keene Police Chief Arthur Walker. “It seemed the safest, easiest way to do this, with no streetlights in the area, is close it down, let people do their work, and when they’re done, open it up again.”

Walker said the police would come out if those guiding the amphibians call them.

An animal control officer, if available, would set up the barricades on weeknights.

Otherwise, another police officer would take the task, which would involve about 10 minutes to get the barricades there and set up and 10 minutes to take them down, he said.

Brett Amy Thelen, science director of the Ashuelot Valley Environmental Observatory, said when the salamanders migrate depends on the weather.

“We need a night with temperatures in the 40s at least, and we need rain continuing through the night,” Thelen said. The group’s Web site says tonight could be a prime opportunity.

The guides will go out at dark and stay until between 10 p.m. and 11:30 p.m., she said.

For up-to-date information on amphibian migration, see

David Greisman can be reached at 352-1234, extension 1439, or

Moonbats! There is no age limit on obtaining Plan B and no parental notification.

I wonder what St. Francis would say about this…

I don’t understand why the guides leave sometime after 10 pm. Do the salamanders have a curfew? If the guides are going to stand outdoors in the dark and in the rain why leave when the night is not even half over?

Another moonbat community, Amherst, MA blocked their roads and actually added culverts under them. The problem is that you have to get salamanders to the culverts so fences had to be constructed; our tax dollars at work.

n 1987 two tunnels, 200 feet (61 m) apart, were built at the salamanders’ crossing site, and short “drift fences” were constructed to guide migrating salamanders into the tunnels. Each tunnel had a slotted top to let in light and provide the damp conditions salamanders need

Cool!! We are the stewards of the Creation, after all.

:: Thumbs way up:: Exactly: God inconvenienced Himself to save us, so why not make a few small sacrifices to take care of the creatures He entrusted to our care.

You should read David Quammen’s The Song of the Dodo: Island Biogeography in an Age of Extinctions (Scribner 1996) - its about the artificial creation of genetic islands across the globe, and how this ultimately degrades ecosystems for everyone and everything. It’s just a road to you, but it’s like the Berlin Wall to salamanders. I like living in a country where people look out for things that can’t necessarily look out for themselves.

We don’t give a hoot about the unborn.

Last I checked salamanders, like frogs were pretty plentiful.

What next, the mosquito?

Unborn child? Kill 'em.

Salamanders? Spend taxpayer dollars so they are safe.

Nice way these leftists think.

Actually, a global extinction of amphibian species (including frogs and salamanders) has been well documented for the past 30 years.

Amphibians are experiencing a precipitous decline in Africa, Asia and North America, according to a comprehensive 2004 survey, which cited climate change as well as deforestation, pollution and habitat loss as key factors.

I think the small scale efforts being made to protect salamanders in New Hampshire and Massachusetts are to be commended. Such efforts don’t hurt anyone and don’t cost much, so why object?

Why do they need guides? I mean, I can see blocking off the road, but if the salamanders have a natural knowledge to cross here then won’t they just know the way? It’s like giving the swallows of Capistrano a GPS, isn’t it?

Or is it that their numbers are so small they’re doing everything they can to ensure the most make it?

originally** posted by Rawb**
Or is it that their numbers are so small they’re doing everything they can to ensure the most make it?

There is no shortage as adults live up 30 years. The spotted salamander is very common as females lay up to 100 eggs and they can travel over 1/2 mile. “One night every spring they leave their underground forest homes and migrate to wetland ponds to breed.”

Also what makes them think they are not interfering in the salamander’s own natural habitat practices when you start fencing in areas and putting in culverts.

It does cost and our government earmarks these kind of projects. And once this project is done, there is always another to take on.

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