The Turtle Trio, namely the box, northern diamondback terrapin, and snapper are on the move, and these harbingers of the summer season need a bit of care and caution as they traverse roads, trails, highways, and byways.
Literally, they are sitting ducks when it comes to crossing these, and the roadkill mortality rate can take a significant toll on area populations.
Granted, when a grand ol’ snapper, say in the 20-plus pound range is in the middle of the asphalt, it immediately gets a heads up and evasive maneuver lest one wants to pay for an alignment or new tie rod, as the bump can be significant.
However, in the case of a box or terrapin, well, they are slow, deliberate, a much lower profile quadruped “pedestrian” and will oftentimes just sit ‘n tuck when feeling threatened via vibration from a car, SUV, truck, and yes, even an ATV. Sometimes, well, the crush and kill occur.
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In the case of the terrapin, there is the second danger of being caught in one of the overnight recreational crab traps and not being able to escape, condemning this brackish water-loving reptile to death by drowning. These traps, from ¼ to ½, to ¾ to full size (“crab hotels” in crabber parlance) are supposed to be, by law, outfitted with terrapin blockers at their entrances. Most crabbers adhere to the rule, but some do not. This is unconscionable, as the blockers are inexpensive and quick ‘n easy to install.
12 Animals That Are Illegal to Own as Pets in New Jersey
While the thought of having a pet monkey or big cat sounds like you'd be living your best life, if you live in New Jersey, you might want to think again.
These are the best hiking spots in New Jersey
A trip to New Jersey doesn't have to be all about the beach. Our state has some incredible trails, waterfalls, and lakes to enjoy.
From the Pine Barrens to the Appalachian Trail to the hidden gems of New Jersey, you have plenty of options for a great hike. Hiking is such a great way to spend time outdoors and enjoy nature, plus it's a great workout.
Before you go out on the trails and explore some of our listeners' suggestions, I have some tips on hiking etiquette from the American Hiking Society.
If you are going downhill and run into an uphill hiker, step to the side and give the uphill hiker space. A hiker going uphill has the right of way unless they stop to catch their breath.
Always stay on the trail, you may see side paths, unless they are marked as an official trail, steer clear of them. By going off-trail you may cause damage to the ecosystems around the trail, the plants, and wildlife that live there.
You also do not want to disturb the wildlife you encounter, just keep your distance from the wildlife and continue hiking.
Bicyclists should yield to hikers and horses. Hikers should also yield to horses, but I’m not sure how many horses you will encounter on the trails in New Jersey.
If you are thinking of bringing your dog on your hike, they should be leashed, and make sure to clean up all pet waste.
Lastly, be mindful of the weather, if the trail is too muddy, it's probably best to save your hike for another day.
I asked our listeners for their suggestions of the best hiking spots in New Jersey, check out their suggestions: