Maine Audubon is beginning the second year of an exciting effort to identify where turtles might be at risk of harm from traffic as they move across the landscape during the active season, and we are hoping you will help!
We are looking for volunteers who can commit to walking along pre-selected road segments, documenting any roadkill or live animals at risk of harm from the roadway. We are particularly interested in turtles for this project, but we would appreciate the documentation of any roadkill observations, or observations of wildlife at risk of becoming roadkill along these routes.
Survey routes have been identified using models of where roadways are near good turtle habitat. The routes are all less than one mile long, and we are asking for data to be collected once a month, at least three times during the active season of May through September.
Does this sound interesting to you? Do you want to contribute to science while getting outside several times over the summer? If so, we ask that all volunteers attend one of the two training sessions we are offering:
March 30, 9 am
Warden Services Headquarters, Gray
April 6, 9 am–12:30 pm
Fields Pond Maine Audubon Sanctuary, Holden
Refreshments will be served! To register, just click the links above. For additional information about this project, please visit our Maine Turtle Survey project page.
At these trainings, we will teach volunteers how to identify different turtle species, data collection methods using iNaturalist and/or paper forms, and road safety. We will provide safety vests, data forms, and small rulers. We ask volunteers to bring smart phones if they have them (for iNaturalist) and appropriate footwear and clothing to go for a brief walk along a roadside at the training session.
There is additional background information on the project in the article published last spring in Maine Audubon’s quarterly Habitat magazine, “Why Did the Turtle Cross the Road?” (PDF). If you have any questions, please contact Sarah Haggerty at (207) 781-2330 x225 or [email protected]
This project is a partnership between Maine Audubon, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, the Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund, and MaineDOT. It was funded in part by the Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund, in which proceeds from the sale of a dedicated instant lottery ticket are used to support outdoor recreation and natural resource conservation.
Thank you in advance for your help, and we look forward to seeing you at one of the training sessions!