|P.O. Box 240
2756 Dam Road
Errol, NH 03579
Stream salamanders are promising indicators of environmental stressors in small streams due to their longevity, relatively stable populations, small home ranges and abundance. The stream salamander survey is a project conducted at eleven National Wildlife Refuges in the northeast and is designed to establish baseline data on stream salamanders as well as investigate the effectiveness of stream salamanders as indicators of ecological disturbance.
On this refuge, four designated stream areas are surveyed for salamanders and larvae. The most common streamside salamander found is the northern two-lined salamander. Other species include northern dusky salamander, and spring salamander.
Vernal Pool Amphibians
Concern over amphibian declines and malformations has prompted increased monitoring of vernal pools. Vernal pools are basins that naturally collect water and are free from breeding populations of fish. For many amphibians, including wood frogs and spotted salamanders, these temporary wetlands are an important habitat where they can breed and feed in an area of few predators. This vernal pool survey is being conducted at 13 National Parks and National Wildlife Refuges in the northeast region. The goals of the survey are to document whether any changes are occurring in spotted salamander and wood frog egg mass counts, and to establish any influences (human impact, water quality, and climatic conditions) on egg mass counts. Commonly found at Lake Umbagog are a variety of adult amphibians as well as egg-masses of spotted salamanders and blue-spotted salamanders. Also regularly found are tadpoles and larvae of wood frogs.
Terrestrial Amphibians and Small Mammals
The Refuge conducts pitfall trap surveys for both small mammals and amphibians. The objective of this survey is to assess community structure of forest floor vertebrates in a variety of different habitat types.
Frog Call Count
Observers stop at fixed points along major refuge wetlands and record all amphibian calls heard. Over the past decade, concern over declining amphibian populations has increased. The frog call count survey along with stream salamander and pitfall surveys will give the refuge baseline information about species present and allow the refuge to track changes in amphibian populations over time.