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Toad migration successful, but not finished just yet

Lost Lake access road and parking lot reopen to vehicle traffic

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The great toad migration is once again nearing its end, and the Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW) is deeming it a success thanks to the tireless work of volunteers.

"The toads are definitely still on the move and taking full advantage of this week's cooler temperatures," said RMOW communications officer Melissa Darou in an email.

"Many toads can be spotted migrating out of Blackcomb Creek and up onto the Lost Lake Loop Trail. The RMOW has installed temporary signage and fencing to alert visitors to areas where toads are crossing trails in large numbers."

Those who would still like to help can stop by Lost Lake Park from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday to Friday and 12 to 5 p.m. Saturday to Monday and help naturalists and technicians move toads across major trails.

The Lost Lake access road and parking lot reopened to traffic on Aug. 14, and the Lost Lake Shuttle and food trucks returned to their regular schedules.

"We ask visitors to please watch their step and walk bikes through posted toad migration routes," Darou said.

"This is very important as toads are only the size of a dime and can be easily missed and crushed underfoot. We would also like to remind visitors to not touch migrating toads, as oils and chemicals on human hands can damage their sensitive skin."

More information can be found at www.whistler.ca/toads.

A complete food truck schedule is available at www.whistler.ca/foodtrucks.

The Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW) runs a biomonitoring program that tracks indicator species — or species that can be studied to provide insight on the greater health of the local ecosystem.

Lost Lake's Western toads have been monitored for the past 11 years, and the RMOW has been assisting with the migration for the past eight.

Back in May, 41 breeding Western toad pairs were seen in Lost Lake — a local record.

Each female can lay up to 50,000 eggs, resulting in hundreds of thousands of tadpoles on the shores of Lost Lake.

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