COVID-19 UPDATE: The Harris Center building will be closed to visitors until further notice. Our trails and grounds remain open.
Tools for Documentation & Stewardship of Vernal Pools
A curated list of helpful resources for egg mass ID, data collection, and best practices for vernal pool management in the Northeast.
Vernal Pool Ecology
- Vernal Pools 101. This four-part YouTube slideshow series provides an introduction to vernal pool ecology and conservation, with a focus on the Monadnock Region.
Egg Mass ID
- Our full-color egg mass ID sheets. Print them out, laminate them, and take ’em with you in the field!
- A great video on egg mass ID. This short video was filmed in Maine, but is useful for Granite Staters too.
Vernal Pool Documentation
- Our Vernal Pool Project volunteer handbook. Detailed instructions on how to identify and document vernal pools for inclusion in the Harris Center’s database of Monadnock Region pools.
- Our field data sheet. Print out a handful to take with you in the field!
- Identifying & Documenting Vernal Pools in New Hampshire. The official, statewide documentation manual from New Hampshire Fish & Game.
Online Data Submission
You can submit your vernal pool data to the Harris Center in the body of an email, via an Excel spreadsheet, or via our web form. Please note that the spreadsheet and web form are unable to accept photos at this time, so you will need to send your photos separately via email, either as attachments or via a link to a photo-sharing website such as Flickr.
- Excel spreadsheet. This is our preferred method of data submission. It’s also the easiest way to submit data for more than one PVP. Download this spreadsheet, fill it out, save the changes, and submit the new file — along with your photos — by email.
- Web form. This option is available for people who do not have access to Excel or for whom Excel is scary. If you searched for multiple PVPs on a single property, you’ll need to fill out the form multiple times — once per PVP.
- NH Wildlife Sightings Database. This option will send your data directly to NHFG, without stopping at the Harris Center on the way; if you submit your data to the state, we ask you to send us a copy as well.
Stewardship & Management of Vernal Pools
- Forestry Habitat Management Guidelines for Vernal Pool Wildlife (2003) by A. Calhoun and P. deMaynadier. Finding a vernal pool on your land doesn’t mean it’s off-limits for forestry! This document outlines best practices for forest management with vernal pool conservation in mind.
- Best Development Practices for Conserving Pool-Breeding Amphibians in Commercial and Residential Developments (2002) by A. Calhoun and M. Klemens. Unlike forestry, development can lead to permanent loss or degradation of vernal pools. This document outlines best practices for minimizing the impacts of development on vernal pools worthy of protection.
- Conserving Vernal Pool Wildlife in Urbanizing Landscapes (2008) by B. Windmiller and A. Calhoun. A detailed review of the impacts of urbanization on — and conservation recommendations for — vernal pool wildlife.
Websites of Note
- Of Pools and People. The most comprehensive website about vernal pool ecology in the Northeast. Excellent videos, annotated presentations, and scientific and layperson-friendly publications related to vernal pools. This site is based in Maine, but has information pertaining to all of New England. Well worth exploring!
- Vernal Pool Association. Chock full of photographs and teaching tools, this website is also home to the fantastic VPA listserve.
- Vermont Vernal Pool Mapping & Monitoring Projects. Cutting-edge vernal pool research and inventory from our friends at the Vermont Center for Ecostudies.
For more information or to volunteer, please contact Brett Amy Thelen at (603) 358-2065 or by email.