Officials in Pasadena recently decided to push back dirt removal in Devil’s Gate Dam area in order for common Western toadlets to, in the words of Joan Rivers, “Grow up!”
With the big rains this year and the Station Fire last year, dirt and sediment have been piling up in the area – officials want to haul the dirt, some 25,000 cubic feet of it, and temporarily store it at nearby Johnson Field, an area of the Hahamongha Watershed Park near JPL. Local residents raised a ruckus when they noted that tadpoles and toads were, well, hopping all over the area.
Rather than smothering the amphibians, Pasadena officials decided to delay the project once the toads grow up and seek out their fame elsewhere away from Johnson Field.
LA Times reports that Chris Stone, assistant deputy director of the Department of Public Works’ Water Resources Division, says….
…”there was a concern with toads that use the area early in the summertime, but our biologists are telling us the toads move out of the area once it dries out, and that should be around the end of the month. We’re hoping that at that point the city gives us a permit.”
Still, the dirt hauling scenario isn’t creating a lot of warmth in the area. About 50 acres of woody growth has sprouted up on the mud deposits that local wildlife has embraced, along with hikers, dog walkers, horse riders and Those Needing to Escape to Nature Before Their Heads Blow Up. Those acres will be destroyed once the hauling begins.