Offers tips to protect, help animals on roadways

To the Editor:

Each spring, salamanders, frogs, turtles, deer and many other beautiful creatures cross roadways to breed and feed.

To reduce accidental road kills, consider these suggestions prepared with help from Sergeant Jim Brady of New Milford and Trooper Wayne Tate of Sherman who have almost three decades of experience.

Before braking to save an animals life, make sure nobody is tailgating you.

Rear-end collisions are more frequent because people text while driving and have other electronic distractions.

If someone is too close, slow down and flash your emergency lights to send them a safe-driving message.

Shop locally to cut your gas costs and also avoid wildlife collisions. Use high beams when possible, unless high beams will impair the vision of other drivers.

If you see an animal moving slowly across a road and it is safe to pull over, you may stop to alert other drivers using hand signals.

Point to it so drivers can avoid crushing it. Small turtles can be moved across the road in the direction they are heading. They should not be collected or moved elsewhere.

If you strike an animal, move your vehicle to the side of the road and watch for drivers who may not see you in time to avoid hitting you or your car. Injured animals may be dangerous so do not help them yourself.

Call 911 if the animal is a road hazard. Debbie Corcione of the Connecticut-authorized WildLife-Line rehabilitation center in Sherman can help some injured and orphaned, baby animals. To reach her call 860-355-5797.

Now is a good time to help map important wildlife areas, since hidden frogs are calling their relatives.

To help map vernal pools vital for frogs and salamanders, send a note to John Foley, naturalist at the Great Hollow Nature Preserve and Research Center, at

Best wishes for a beautiful spring.

Rolf Martin

Sherman Conservation Commission