There they were, in the dimness of an early spring morning, making their way with determination, some over long distances, from their solitary existence for most of the previous year, to this gathering place.
For just one day—to join with others of their kind.
No, not the salamanders…yet.
The pond watchers—those individuals, the citizen scientist, who will monitor vernal pools in the many counties within Ohio, identifying the creatures found within and documenting their locations.
The workshop at Stratford Ecological Center, an opportunity to learn from the experts and share findings with other watchers, before heading home for another year’s observations.
Because the percentage of wetlands lost to development and drainage in the state of Ohio ranks second only to that in California.
And the first step in preservation is an appreciation of value.
So, until that balmy spring night , ears ringing with the calls of peepers and wood frogs, feet muddied by the soft earth releasing them,
I will study my training materials carefully.
And wait to greet them upon their return.
And the salamander on the Ohio Environmental Council's website?