GLT hosts Connecticut Trails Day hike

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The Godard Preserve hike was lead by Jen Plourde and John Weeks. Submitted photo

The Granby Land Trust hosted a hike at its Godard Preserve on Connecticut Trails Day (June 2), and in a spring filled with cool temperatures and rainy days, the group got lucky and was blessed with a beautiful morning. About 20 people turned out to see the preserve and to learn from hike leaders and GLT board members, Jen Plourde and John Weeks.

Plourde, a middle school science teacher, and Weeks, a passionate birder, were able to share their knowledge of the birds and amphibians on the trail. They called in quite a few birds with recorded bird calls; and found some American toads and a red-backed salamander that was hiding under a rotting log. As Weeks said, β€œIt’s always a thrill to find a salamander, especially these days when amphibians are in trouble worldwide.”

In the last 20 years, amphibian populations worldwide have dropped precipitously. Loss and degradation of habitat has taken a huge toll and the use of harmful chemicals in the environment is particularly detrimental to amphibians. Their thin, permeable skin provides little protection. Recently, already fragile amphibian populations have been decimated by the outbreak of the fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. The preservation of land, particularly riparian corridors, is critical to the health of these fragile creatures. Organizations like the Granby Land Trust are working hard to preserve land, clean up the air and water, and protect wildlife like the American toad and the red-backed salamander.

The Granby Land Trust is a member-based organization. For just $30, your family can join the GLT and support its efforts. Send a check, made out to Granby Land Trust, to: P.O. Box 23, Granby, CT 06035. To learn more, go to granbylandtrust.org and follow on Facebook and Instagram.