New Jersey Audubon (NJA) is working collaboratively with Public Service Electric and Gas (PSEG) to evaluate the effects of vegetation maintenance activities along transmission Right’s-of-Way. This project is focused in the New Jersey Highlands region and seeks to provide recommendations for future corridor management that will maintain and improve habitat for wildlife (e.g., leading to increases in population or reproductive output), especially species of greatest conservation need. More specifically, the overall goal of the project is to develop habitat management strategies for PSEG transmission line corridors that provide the greatest benefit to young forest wildlife, while satisfying the company’s regulatory requirements for vegetation maintenance and management. In a heavily forested landscape, utility Right-of-Way's (ROW's) can offer important habitat not only for young forest breeding birds, but for a number of terrestrial species that need an open-canopy for nesting, basking or foraging. Turtles are an excellent example of how ROWs can be an important in satisfying certain habitat needs. During the 2013 field season an exposed snapping turtle nest was found offering the opportunity to observe the hatching process. To the right is an image of a new hatchling with the yolk sac that provides nourishment right after hatching. This is quickly absorbed. We hope you enjoy viewing this fascinating wildlife spectacle through the pictures and video posted here.
An exposed snapping turtle nest was found this summer and the eggs were taken home to hatch and record the process. Below are the turtles–returning to the wild…..