We are all familiar with the old adage “Build it and they will come”. Well, the multi-year effort of long hours and heavy labor restoring and maintaining the habitat along with dedicated volunteerism at White’s Lane is paying off. The Diamondback Terrapin females are recognizing the site as a suitable nesting spot and the number of nests has been increasing every year since this project began in 2009.
This year we protected 5 nests (4 Diamondback Terrapins and one relocated Box Turtle), experienced 4 encounters with nesting females, found 3 other natural or depredated nests (2 Diamondback Terrapin and 1 Box Turtle) and found evidence of one hatched 20 egg Black Racer Snake nest. Forty-three Diamondback Terrapin and 3 Box Turtle hatchlings were released in our continuing conservation efforts to increase the population of these threatened species.
The introduction of bird boxes to the site has further helped White’s Lane to return to its role as a haven for wildlife to continue its life cycle in a protected, beautiful and welcome site. Walking along the mowed paths you can’t help but be enamored with the beauty of the area, the plethora of bird- and other wild-life, the gorgeous vista of swaying wildflowers and the peaceful tranquility of Henson’s Cove and The River. It’s a wonderful spot for contemplating life and nature while experiencing the satisfaction of making a difference.
Our small band of volunteers is always looking for like-minded individuals who’d like to join our ranks next season for another chance to learn more about these magnificent creatures and assist the conservation programs to increase their numbers. Come and join us!
By: Sue Reiher, OCT and MA Audubon volunteer coordinator