People Come Together to Save Turtles from Traffic
A little over a century ago, the Long Point Causeway in Ontario, Canada, was built. Since then, thousands of turtles and endangered reptiles have been run over, crushed, and killed by vehicles traveling the causeway.
Then along came Rick Levick and some local residents who had had enough and empowered themselves to do something about it.
They proposed that culverts be installed under the 2-mile-stretch of the causeway. The culverts would allow animals, including the turtles, to cross safely from one side of the road to the other without being struck or killed.
The cost was a whopping $2.7 million and funding was given from different wildlife agencies, organizations, and fundraisers to help cover costs.
Construction of the culverts started in 2008 and wrapped up this January. There are 12 culverts in all in this project and since they were installed have decreased the number of turtle and snake deaths by over 80%!
“We did have some opposition,” Levick says. “It was people very skeptical that we could do anything that said: ‘Well we’ve been running over turtles for years, and they’re still here, so why bother?’ Of course, that’s probably what they said just before the buffalo disappeared.”
Image: Long Point Causeway Improvement Project