Amphibian Road Survey

Amphibians are the most threatened vertebrate group globally, and habitat degradation and loss are identified as the key factors. Roads pose a major threat to amphibians as they make their annual migrations between aquatic breeding sites and terrestrial overwintering areas in both spring and fall. The maintenance of migratory pathways between aquatic breeding sites and overwintering areas is critical to the ongoing persistence of amphibian populations. However, roads often occur adjacent to lakes and wetlands.

Photo Credit: Elke Wind

We can build bridges and tunnels to help amphibians cross roads near their migratory pathways, but we need to know where to build them in order to have the most impact. Enter the road survey, where NatureKids in partnership with local stewardship organizations and experts count amphibians, both alive and dead, to determine where infrastructure placement would be most effective.

These road surveys are conducted in areas that are relatively safe for families to survey, have a high likelihood of containing amphibian crossing locations, and a high species diversity. The data from this project was, and will continue to be, entered into the provincial Wildlife Species Inventory / Frogwatch BC online database. This data is accessible to government staff and scientists studying roads and amphibians and testing mitigation techniques, such as the most effective materials and dimensions to be used for small wildlife underpasses.

RESOURCES

A series of training videos have been created in order to explain the road survey and show techniques and materials required to conduct your own:

• Part I – Introduction
• Part II – Preparing for a Road Survey
• Part III – Conducting a Road Survey

Contact NatureKids BC at coordinator@naturekidsbc.ca to learn more or to conduct your own road survey.