February 4th, 2009 by Peggy Farabaugh
As you may know, a major part of our mission at Vermont Woods Studios is forest conservation, and today we are celebrating BIG time. The Spotted Turtle, a small black turtle with yellow spots is so endangered in our area that a few years ago there were only 8 known specimens in the wild. For the past several years, we have been working with Jim Andrews and the Reptile and Amphibian Atlas project at Middlebury College to study the turtle and its habitat in an effort to implement protective measures. Last year, my neighbor, Kim Gragen and his son Elliott reported a spotted turtle sighting nearby, which was immediately followed up by the Vermont Division of Fish and Wildlife DFW. As a result, the DFW discovered a new nesting site and last night they received permission from the Town of Vernon, Vermont to purchase 15 acres of wetlands, including the nesting site, to further our efforts to save this rare and endangered species. Other types of reptiles, amphibeans and water fowl will also benefit from the conservation measure, including the rare Jefferson's Salamander. More information can be found in this morning's edition of the Brattleboro Reformer. We are grateful to the Vernon Select Board and all the people who helped to make this small but important conservation measure possible. And we want to thank our customers too and remind them that a portion of each sale at Vermont Woods Studios is donated to local and international organizations working to preserve the forest.