Save Our Salamanders and Protect the Rich Biodiversity of New England
PLEASE GIVE TODAY TO:
Build two wildlife crossings to funnel frogs, salamanders and other animals under Monkton Road in central Vermont
- Create a safe connection for critical wildlife habitat divided by an increasingly busy road
Ensure the survival of one of the largest known populations of the blue-spotted salamander, a species of regional significance,
as well as a diverse group of other amphibian species
Support science-based and grassroots conservation solutions
Participate in a project that will help improve the local and global prospects of amphibian conservation
When you click the link above you will see just how ideal this location is for a healthy amphibian population. A large wetland abuts a steep, forested area perfect for breeding. The only issue? A well traveled road.
The Monkton Road Wildlife Crossing: Ensuring the survival of a critical amphibian migration corridor.
As this Indiegogo campaign unfolds, an ancient spring ritual is taking place throughout the Northern Hemisphere – the emergence of amphibians from their winter habitat to their breeding pools. Sadly, one of the largest and most diverse amphibian populations in the northeastern United States must cross an increasingly busy road – which makes this site also one of the most threatened in the northeast. For years, scores of volunteers have mobilized during peak movement times in the town of Monkton, Vermont in order to assist one of the larger known and most diverse populations of amphibians in the region to cross a busy road. Despite the dedicated efforts of volunteers, more than 50% of the animals migrating across this stretch of road are getting killed during the annual journey between their upland habitat and vital wetlands where they reproduce. As a result, a regionally significant population of amphibians is in peril of extirpation. Traffic rates on this once-rural road are increasing at a rate that has biologists convinced that, without an infrastructure solution, this population will surely die out.
The good news is that there is a solution. Shovel-ready plans are complete and project bid documents are drafted. The total cost for the construction of two wildlife crossing tunnels and associated guide fences at this location is $380,000. Ground breaking is scheduled for 2014, as soon as a $45,000 funding gap is closed. Public sources have provided the majority of project design and construction funds through competitive grants, and construction is on target for 2014 – with your help.
This is a multi-partner grassroots effort that has enjoyed
global press attention for its innovative approach to reversing an ecological
tragedy. News outlets from as far away
as Sidney, Australia and Taipei, China, were covering this story within hours
of the announcement of our Federal Highway Administration Transportation
Enhancement Grant award. The Lewis Creek Association and the Town of Monkton,
Vermont are leading this collaborative partnership that includes federal
agencies, state agencies, international non-governmental organizations, private
philanthropists, and generous watershed neighbors. This diverse partnership demonstrates the
significance of this site – not just locally but far beyond this
Recent estimates suggest that one in three amphibian species is at risk of extinction. By preserving Vermont's amphibians, we can help save important populations in the Northeastern United States and help lay the groundwork for future projects throughout the world.
“This is an exemplary enhancement project, and one that truly embodies the spirit of the [Federal Highway Administration] Transportation Enhancement Program.”
- Patricia White, Director, Habitat and Highways Program, Defenders of Wildlife
“The fact that for many of these species, large percentages of the population must cross the road to access breeding sites indicates a significant risk of population loss due to road kill.”
- Scott Jackson, Director, Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation Program, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
“This is one of the most important known amphibian crossings in the state. It is hard to imagine that the Monkton Road population can sustain this level of mortality for many more years.”
- James Andrews, Coordinator, Vermont Reptile and Amphibian Atlas Project
We were delighted when we learned that Woody Jackson had offered to create original artwork for our Indiegogo campaign. Jackson is best known for producing the artwork seen on Ben & Jerry's ice cream cartons all over the world.
The three paintings he donated are below.
The Lewis Creek Association, a nonprofit organization registered as a 501(c)(3), has offered to accept and manage the tax-deductible donations collected from this Indiegogo campaign.
Lewis Creek Association
Town of Monkton, Vermont
The Vermont Agency of Transportation
Gund Institute for Ecological Economics
Defenders of Wildlife
Trans Wild Alliance