Silver Salamander Award Recipients

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Year Recipient Comments
2016 Dr. Anthony Braithwaite


Dr. Anthony Braithwaite (Tony) has been on the cutting edge of reptile research and conservation in Essex County for over 20 years, providing his expertise as a veterinarian to assist in reptile research. During this time, Tony has been at the forefront of surgical implantation of radio-transmitters into some of Ontario's most at-risk snake species. Beginning with snake projects on Pelee Island in the mid 90's, word of his expertise spread to other researchers,and he has now performed over 650 radio transmitter implant surgeries for several projects since that time. Tony has a love of wildlife and passion for conservation and he offers these services free of charge, and often works late into the night after his typical work day is over. His extensive volunteer efforts with snakes have included projects at Hillman Marsh, Ojibway Park, the City of Windsor, Point Pelee National Park, and Rondeau Provincial Park. Tony also donates veterinary expertise for a number of other wildlife projects,making him a true champion for wildlife, and very deserving of the Silver Salamander award.
2016 Ontario Turtle Conservation Centre

Dr. Sue Carstairs accepted the Silver Salamander Award on behalf of the Ontario Turtle Conservation Centre (OTCC; home of the Kawartha Turtle Trauma Centre). The OTTC is a registered charity that is unique in its scope and impact within the world of turtle conservation. The hospital is the only one of its kind in Ontario, if not Canada, that specializes in rehabilitating and releasing injured or ill native turtles found throughout Ontario. The OTCC treats almost 500 adult turtles and hatches out approximately 1000 eggs each season. By utilizing cutting-edge veterinary methods to return turtles into the wild, adult turtle mortality is mitigated. The impact is magnified by the support and training they provide to other centres throughout Canada, to encourage and mentor them while they address injuries on a smaller scale. The OTCC has a direct conservation impact for at-risk turtle species by not only carrying out treatment of injured turtles, but also through field research, head-starting, and education programs. For example, the OTTC radio-tracks both rehabilitated animals and captive-hatched juveniles upon release to assess their behavior and habitat use compared to wild individuals. Overall, the many programs carried out by the OTTC serve to address a multitude of threats to Ontario's turtles, and it is this multipronged approach that offers a significant contribution to turtle conservation in Canada.
2016 Bob Johnson


Few people can ignite passion for the natural world quite like Bob Johnson. As humble as he is committed, Bob has worked locally, nationally and internationally to kick-start a wide variety of community-based conservation projects to protect reptiles and amphibians wherever the need is greatest. He has had a truly remarkable career, having spent 41 years with the Toronto Zoo, making extraordinary contributions to conservation through his professionalism, enthusiasm, and dedication. Bob is regarded as a visionary leader by wildlife managers and zoo professionals throughout North America for his pioneering efforts to develop model conservation programmes that resonate with local communities. Perhaps one of his greatest achievements has been the development of the Adopt-A-Pond Wetland Conservation Programme, an award winning programme established in 1991 that provides educators, students, land managers and community groups with stewardship resources and educational opportunities to protect, restore and conserve wetland habitats and biodiversity. The programme has blossomed into a large-scale stewardship effort with an expanded group of citizen science initiatives, including Ontario Turtle Tally and the Wetland Guardians Registry. These initiatives provide a valuable tool for people looking to connect with their local environment, with thousands of people participating every year. They fill in important knowledge gaps about animal populations and locations, and provide a tangible way for the public to take part in species conservation. In addition to its citizen science initiatives, research and monitoring projects, and species recovery programs, Adopt-A-Pond also delivers outreach and education programs to classrooms, professional networks and community groups throughout Ontario. The programme fosters respect and teamwork among staff, volunteers and partners to achieve mutual goals that benefit species and their habitats. Even in retirement Bob continues to inspire by serving in an advisory role on several key conservation projects. It is for the development of this outstanding programme that Bob Johnson received the Silver Salamander award in 2016.
2001 Nature Trust of New Brunswick




For their establishment of Hyla Park in 1995; this park was established to protect the most northeasternly population of the Gray Treefrog (Hyla versicolor)
2001 Ducks Unlimited




For their establishment of the Small Marsh Program; the goal of this program is to establish or enhance existing small wetlands.
2002 Dave Roberts


Manitoba Conservation

Dave Roberts (L) with Phil Johnson and Ken Erikson from Manitoba Hydro

In recognition of his important conservation efforts at the overwintering dens of the red-sided gartersnake, Thamnophis sirtalis parietalis, in Narcisse, Manitoba.
2002 Manitoba Hydro




Dave Roberts (L) with Phil Johnson and Ken Erikson from Manitoba Hydro

In recognition of the donation of volunteer time, expertise and equipment to install kilometres of drift fence and "snake tunnels" constructed under the highway at various locations along the migration corridor of the red-sided garter snake in the Interlake region of Manitoba.
2003 Ben Porchuk


Wilds of Pelee Island

In recognition of continued support for conservation of amphibians and reptiles on Pelee Island
2004 Laura Friis


British Columbia Ministry of Environment

Contribution to the conservation of amphibians and reptiles in Canada, through overseeing BC's Wildlife at Risk brochure series on amphibians and reptiles; involvement in many conservation programs for amphibians and reptiles, ranging from on-the-ground recovery projects for individual species, to establishing the BC Frogwatch program, to general advocacy for wetland conservation
2004 Steve Brechtel


Alberta Ministry of Sustainable Resource Development

Steve (L) with Dave Cunnington

Contribution to the conservation of amphibians and reptiles in Canada, through establishing the Alberta Northern Leopard Frog reintroduction project; also development of Albertan conservation initiatives such as the Volunteer Amphibian Monitoring Program, the "less official" snake den inventory, the Provincial Status Report series, and the Species at Risk brochure series
2005 Rideau Valley Conservation Authority




In recognition of the Rideau River Biodiversity Project
2005 Canadian Museum of Nature




2005 Dr. Frederick W. Schueler




In recognition of conducting more than two decades of "Mudpuppy Night in Oxford Mills"
2006 Columbia Basin Fish & Wildlife Compensation Program




Doug Adama (R) with Dave Cunnington

In recognition of continued support for the recovery of the Southern Mountain population of the Northern Leopard Frog
2006 West Kootenay Community Ecosociety




Suzy Hamilton, Joanne Cohen & Gord McAdams

In recognition of commitment to the conservation of Painted Turtles in British Columbia
2006 Michael Rankin, In memory


Canadian Museum of Nature

In recognition of operating the Rideau River project "turtle hot line". A true friend of Canadian herpetology and a man with turtles in his heart
2007 Kids for Turtles, Peterborough, ON.




Kids 4 Turtles was the inspiration for the formation of the Kawartha Turtle Trauma Centre. This group of young conservationists, ages 3-10, raised almost $5,000 to purchase turtle crossing signs for Peterborough County. Their efforts have undoubtedly saved countless turtles by warning motorists to slow down and keep an eye out for turtles.
www.kawarthaturtle.org
2009 Wakamow Valley Authority,
Moose Jaw, SK





Margaret Moran with Andy Didiuk

In recognition of Northern Leopard Frog conservation -A contribution to the conservation of amphibians and reptiles in Canada
2010 Mersey Tobeatic Research Institute
and
Kejimkujic National Park and National Historic Site





In recognition of Blanding's Turtle Nest Monitoring. The two organizations have worked together at protecting Blanding's Turtle nesting sites and raising awareness of their importance in the Park and the greater community around southwest Nova Scotia. Other species at risk they are involved with includes Eastern Ribbonsnake, particularly stewardship initiatives to protect them: Species at Risk Stewardship.
2011 Thunder Bay Field Naturalists




The Thunder Bay Field Naturalists Club is one of the earliest formed clubs in Ontario and is at the forefront of conservation and educational efforts in Northwestern Ontario. The club and its members have participated in several monitoring programs, its members contribute records to the OHS and Ontario Nature databases. Some of the club's past members have published papers in the herp literature. They have invited speakers in to talk about herps, conduct regular hikes highlighting frog breeding, and have acquired through purchase and donation numerous conservation reserves protecting over 3,000 ha. Currently some of its members are investigating ways of protecting western painted turtle nesting sites near Sturgeon Lake.
2012 BC Painted Turtle Working Group


Accepted by Purnima Govindarajulu

The Western Painted Turtle is a species of conservation concern in British Columbia and there are a number of efforts under way to conserve the species, decrease threats and restore and enhance habitats. The British Columbia Western Painted Turtle Working Group formed in 2009 as a way to share knowledge and resources, standardize survey and monitoring methodology, test and improve habitat restoration methods, collaborate on research, share public education and outreach materials, and collaborate on grant writing and fund raising proposals. Members come from diverse organizations including government agencies, non-government environmental groups, stewardship organizations, and academia. The group meets once or twice a year to coordinate projects/initiatives and sometimes hold training workshops. The group also serves as a source of expertise and rapid response if there are threats or issues concerning Western Painted Turtles in B.C. Looking forward, the group is hoping to host the first Western Painted Turtle survey blitz in B.C. on the World Turtle Day May 23rd, 2013.
2013 Centre d'information sur l'environnement de Longueuil (CIEL)




Scott Gillingwater (right) presenting Silver Salamander to Tommy Montpetit (left), who accepted the award on behalf of CIEL

The Silver Salamander award went to the Centre d'information sur l'environnement de Longueuil (CIEL) in recognition of their important contribution to Chorus Frog protection in the greater Montreal area.
2014 Alberta Amphibian and Reptile Specialist Group





Kris Kendell accepted this award for the Alberta Amphibian and Reptile Specialist Group (AARSG). The group is chaired by Alberta Conservation Association and consists of a network of scientists, biologists, educators and naturalists, representing government and non-government organizations that are dedicated to the study and conservation of amphibians and reptiles in Alberta. The AARSG's vision is to share and promote knowledge and understanding of ecological and conservation issues facing Alberta's native amphibians and reptiles. For more information about the AARSC, visit the Alberta Conservation Association website
2015 Canadian Sea Turtle Network





Kathleen Martin, Executive Director of the Canadian Sea Turtle Network, accepted this award for the collaborative work of the CSTN with scientists, fishermen, and community members in protecting sea turtles, both within Canada and internationally.
2015 Department of National Defence





Deanna McCullum accepted this award for the efforts that she led with the Department of National Defence to protect Wood Turtle populations at Base Gagetown, New Brunswick.