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Annual Spring Amphibian Migration at R. B. Winter!

A Spotted Salamander migrating across a road in R. B. Winter State Park

An incredible event happens every Spring on rainy nights when the temperatures are just right: the annual Spring amphibian migration! This year, that night was last night as all across Pennsylvania, countless salamanders and frogs began moving from the upland habitats where they've spent the winter months to wetlands for the beginning of their breeding cycle.

R. B. Winter State Park and the surrounding lands of Bald Eagle State Forest protect many of these breeding sites, including hundreds of seasonal woodland pools scattered throughout the forest. Last night, it was possible to observe thousands of Spring Peepers, Wood Frogs, Four-toed Salamanders, Spotted Salamanders, and Jefferson Salamanders as they moved across the landscape towards these pools where they will mate and lay their eggs before returning to the forest.

Many other species of amphibians, including Eastern Red-spotted Newts, Eastern American Toads, Northern Spring Salamanders, North Dusky Salamanders, Northern Red Salamanders, and Eastern Red-Backed Salamanders could be seen moving about the woods, hunting for insects or smaller amphibians, using the wet conditions to more easily move around their environment, or just soaking in the warm spring rains.

While it is possible to see frogs and salamanders moving on rainy nights throughout Spring, Summer, and Fall, they only move in the largest concentrations at the beginning of Spring, on nights like last night!


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