Cucumber Gulch, home to the rare Boreal Toad is being invaded by dogs. A protective management overlay for Cucumber Gulch prohibits dogs altogether, but a variance was made to allow for leased dogs on the trail through the gulch named "Interstate."
Open space planner Heidi andersen said her department will likely initiate a move to rescind the variance after researchers reported finding a dead boreal toad near the trail recently. The toad had small puncture wounds suggesting that a bite from a canine caused its death. The toad was previously located and tagged by the boreal toad research team, which has been surveying the area for several weeks. The toads are a state-listed endangered species.
Andersen said that some of the most blatant violations stem from nearby property owners in the Peak 7 area, who simply let their dogs out of the house to roam free in the area.
She said town trail crews have reported abuses of the area. In one case, a person walked right up to a large sign that spells out the leash restrictions and started throwing a tennis ball for her dog to chase right into the wetlands.