The abrupt change in the weather that melted lingering snowbanks and burst the forsythia into bloom also rekindled the romantic impulses of Roxborough's famed toads, 600 of whom made a surprise migratory appearance last Sunday night. You may recall that the toads (and some frogs, too) converge on the old reservoir in Upper Roxborough to mate and lay eggs each spring.
Unfortunately, they have to cross a lot of busy roads to get there, and lots don't make it. In recent years, a volunteer force organized by Lisa Levinson has come out to monitor roadways on nights when the toads are marching.
Though it's hard to anticipate (as Sunday's early showing demonstrates), experts have predicted the toad migration to run from March 26 to April 16, during which time roads will be blockaded and cars detoured around streets bordering the reservoirs, which are off Ridge Avenue between Port Royal and Summit streets.
You can sign up for shifts at www.toaddetour.com. Take it from us - it's a lot of fun walking along quiet, wooded roads in the dark, looking for toads and helping them get to safety. Really. (Be sure to bring a flashlight, sturdy shoes and rain-worthy clothing.)