In the Certification Reporting Process, data is collected in the field for the pools we are working to certify. Vernal pond surveys include photographs of the pond full of water in the spring, evidence of obligate species (wood frog egg masses, spotted salamander egg masses, or fairy shrimp), and a description of the pool (length, width, depth and location using GPS coordinates). Field work is completed by our Team.
Certification information is entered by our Team into the database of the Vernal Pool & Rare Species (VPRS) Information System maintained by the Natural Heritage & Endangered Species Program (NHESP). NHESP is part of the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife.
We have a narrow timeframe to accomplish these surveys because the ponds must have water and the evidence of obligate species occurs during the spring... and this is generally a 3-4 week span.
A more thorough description of the Certification Reporting Process can be found on the Vernal Ponds page.
Below are photographs of field work taken during our 2017 Vernal Pond Surveys.
Photographs compliments of Keith Bertone, Nick Taormina and Rick Roth.