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Surveying PA’s amphibians and reptiles

July 2, 2013

All of the reptiles and amphibians identified last weekend during the first Upper Delaware BioBlitz (www.UpperDelawareBioBlitz.com) will have the double honor of being counted twice, first as residents of the Norcross Wildlife Foundation’s property in Starlight, PA, and also in the recently launched Pennsylvania Amphibian and Reptile Survey (PARS).

The Mid-Atlantic Center for Herpetology and Conservation (MAC HAC) is partnering with the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission in a 10-year project to establish a new amphibian and reptile atlas and are reaching out to all Pennsylvania nature enthusiasts for help.

A primary goal is to build an “army of citizen scientists” to help identify the distribution of herps throughout the state to enable better monitoring of changes to populations and ultimately provide more effective protection to them. Amphibians in particular are sensitive to environmental changes and all herps are increasingly impacted by loss of habitat.

Representatives of MAC HAC were on hand during the bioblitz, where more than 970 distinct species were identified in nine categories such as birds, fungi, mammals and more. To see some of the species catalogued by the BioBlitz Herp Team, visit paherpsurvey.org/search.php?r_county=803. Learn more about how you can get involved at www.paherpsurvey.org.