We are carefully watching a developing storm system that looks to bring heavy rainfall and warmish temperatures over East Brunswick on Thursday. As each forecast run has been posted over the past few days, the rainfall has been increased and the temperatures have trended a few degrees warmer. The forecast temperatures for tomorrow have ticked up a bit too. Assuming the forecast holds and the rain really materializes, the conditions should be spot-on to trigger salamander and frog movement to the vernal pools. Of course, we've been wrong before but after the long dry spell that was preceded by heavy late season snow cover, we suspect the amphibians are just waiting for the right combination of precipitation and temperature to move. I visited the pools yesterday and with the cold temperatures they were quiet. But they are ice free and despite the dry conditions are nicely filled. Soon they will be a cacophony of frog songs and we can put winter behind us. We will post another update Thursday morning. Please take a few minutes to familiarize yourself with the very important safety measures for you and the amphibians.
A few VERY IMPORTANT Safety Rules!
Human Safety -
Beekman Road and Church Lane are always dark. Cars driving on them are moving fast and don't expect anyone there. It is simply DANGEROUS and extreme caution is the rule!
NEVER walk Beekman Road when it is not closed.
NEVER let children cross Church Lane without holding their hand.
Wear bright colored clothing so you are highly visible.
Parking is best at the small county lot on Beekman Road (accessed from White Pine on the South Brunswick side) just before the closure and on Crispin Lane off of Church.
Do NOT park in front of the barriers.
Use exceptional caution when parking as it is often dark and rainy and visibility of visitors and other cars maybe limited.
Amphibian Safety -
EVERYONE must have a flashlight. Phone flashlights are useless. Without a good strong bright flashlight there is a real risk of stepping on an amphibian, which completely defeats the point of our protection plan.
PLEASE DO NOT handle the amphibians. They are slippery and easy to drop and our hands can transfer oils that are harmful to them. They know where they are going, so just enjoy them as they cross and take lots of photographs!