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Effort afoot to trap and relocate elusive Minsi Lake turtles

Effort afoot to trap and relocate elusive Minsi Lake turtles

how to take ivermectin paste for humans Vimercate Redbelly turtles and other species will be finding new homes as Minsi Lake is drained this month for a dam replacement.

sideling safari sam online spielautomaten Last year, the state released $25.7 million in capital budget funding to repair five « high-hazard, unsafe dams, » including Minsi Lake in Upper Mount Bethel Township. The job is estimated to cost $4 million.

ivermectin for humans hiv The 117-acre lake is home to a variety of aquatic plant and animal species, including redbelly turtles — also known as red-bellied turtles or red-bellied cooters. They’re on the threatened species list in Pennsylvania.

prehistorically ofertas slot The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission is overseeing the project. Commission biologist Chris Urban said this is the largest recovery and relocation of turtles attempted in Pennsylvania that he is aware of.

For the last 30 days, several floating hoop traps have been placed across the surface of the lake to capture the redbellies in baited nets. Though, all turtle species that are caught will be relocated.

Floating hoop traps, like the one seen here in May 2017, are part of an attempt to capture and relocate redbelly turtles on Minsi Lake in Upper Mount Bethel Township.
Floating hoop traps, like the one seen here in May 2017, are part of an attempt to capture and relocate redbelly turtles on Minsi Lake in Upper Mount Bethel Township. (John Best | lehighvalleylive.com contributor)

Turtles will be relocated to either East Bangor Lake, ponds on the Upper Mount Bethel Township Eastern Industries property or wetlands along Martins Creek.

As the water level gets very low, the state will perform a fish salvage and relocate the fish to Brady’s Lake in Monroe County.

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, redbelly turtles are the state’s third-largest turtle. They can grow up to 15 inches and weigh up to 15 pounds.

Catching the shy redbelly can be difficult. Urban said traps are checked daily or every other day. So far, traps have caught 150 turtles — mostly snapping, painted and eastern musk turtles — but only one redbelly, he said.

Protecting the diminishing population in Pennsylvania is one of the purposes of the program. The elusive nature of the redbelly also makes studying them difficult, according to Urban.

« We’re trying to keep them alive, keep them going and not dip into endangerment status, » Urban said.

Officials have previously said the draining process involves water being released gradually into the East Branch of Martins Creek through controls on the existing dam.

As of May 19, the lake appeared to be down several feet from its normal water level and one can walk on the shallower edges that are typically under water. Officials said they expect the lake to be drained completely by the first week of June.

The construction phase is scheduled to start later this summer and last through 2018. The lake is expected to refill naturally through precipitation and be open again for public use in spring 2019. Stocked trout fishing is expected to return to the popular fishing and boating destination in 2019.

There will be an attempt to catch turtles from their relocated spots and place them back in the lake. Urban noted that turtles and other species will likely find their way back to the lake on their own.

« I don’t know how they know to come back, but they come back, » Urban said.