Reference

Joseph Hofstee, Program Manager, 302-760-2358

Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT)

Project Highlights

  • Bog Turtle Phase 1 Habitat Assessments
  • On-site Phase 2 Bog Turtle Surveys

Project Details

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERADavid Smith of Coastal Resources, Inc. conducted a Phase 1 bog turtle habitat assessment for proposed widening improvements to an approximately eight-mile segment of DelDOT SR 1 from the Roth Bridge to SR 273 in New Castle County, Delaware.  Eighty-six (86) numbered wetlands representing over 450 acres were assessed for their potential to support bog turtles.  Wetlands included tidal estuarine emergent; tidal palustrine emergent, scrub shrub, and forest; and nontidal emergent, scrub shrub, and forest.  Eight (8) wetlands had at least marginal bog turtle habitat, with one wetland supporting good bog turtle habitat.

Data sheets were completed and photographs taken of all assessed wetlands.  A final report was prepared that detailed the extent of suitable bog turtle habitat within the one-half-mile corridor adjacent to existing SR 1.  The report discussed potential affects to bog turtle habitat based on the current highway design plans and discussed next steps in client and agency coordination.  The report was submitted to DelDOT for final submittal to the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control as part of project environmental review.

For Phase 2, separate bog turtle presence/absence surveys were conducted within the suitable habitat portions of four wetlands identified in Phase 1.  No bog turtles were found at any of the surveyed wetland locations. Many other herpetofauna were observed and photo-documented within each wetland.  A report was prepared documenting the findings.