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Salamander man coming to OPG

Handout from the St. Lawrence River Institute

Published on August 7, 2017

A salamander.

CORNWALL, Ontario - Do you know the difference between a reptile and amphibian? The River Institute and the OPG St. Lawrence Power Development Visitor Centre are collaborating on answering just that question by co-hosting “Reptiles and Amphibians” – a free Science and Nature Workshop for the entire family at the Visitor Centre on Saturday, August 18  from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Cornwall.

This fun and informative workshop encourages members of the community to come out of their shell and explore critters that slither, slide, crawl and hop.  Workshop Coordinator Josh Filion says, “Matt Ellerbeck is an award winning naturalist with a passion for salamanders and we are fortunate to have him join us.”  “Known as the Salamander Man and founder of Save our Salamanders, Matt will bring to the Visitor Centre an amazing amount of interesting information as well as some of his special salamanders.”

Matt Ellerbeck says, “Salamanders are actually in a terrible crisis. Many species are disappearing from the wild and unfortunately due to their secretive nature they are not often seen by people.”  He adds, “This means that their decline is largely going unnoticed and they are further at risk because very few conservation groups are dedicated to their recovery.”

It is these concerns that led Ellerbeck to start his Save the Salamander campaign several years ago and that fosters his dedication to educating people of all ages on these shy and gentle amphibians .

Other activities of the day include hands-on science stations that feature information on turtles, snakes, frogs and other marsh dwelling friends.  For more information on the day’s activities, visit the St. Lawrence Power Development Visitor Centre Facebook Page or go to www.riverinstitute.ca.