MIDDLE SMITHFIELD TWP., Pa. -

Love is in the air on this first day of Spring, and officials in Monroe County are taking steps to protect some of the slimier love birds.

River Road within the Delaware Water Gap Recreation Area in Middle Smithfield Township will be closed for several evenings in the coming weeks to protect breeding amphibians.

John Donahue, the superintendent of the recreation area, says as the temperatures rise, wood frogs, spotted salamanders and other amphibians are much more active.

“This year, things seem to be happening a little later than usual due to all of the snow cover and the cold temperatures,” Donahue said. “But spring weather will be here very soon and when it finally arrives, the amphibians will start moving.”

Donahue says every spring, animals are killed by motor vehicles near breeding hot spots, like River Road. The road will be closed from 4:00 p.m. to 6:30 a.m. on days where mild temperatures and rain is in the forecast.

“Closing the road to vehicles not only protects the amphibians,” said Donahue of this annual natural event. “It also offers a rare opportunity for the public to observe one of the most unique natural occurrences in region.”

For more information on the road closure, you can check out the park's web site.