MILFORD, N.H. — Officials say excavation at a town-owned site in southern New Hampshire has stopped after concerned citizens reported seeing endangered turtles nesting on the property.

Suzanne Fournier, of the Brox Environmental Citizens, told Milford officials Blanding’s turtles have been seen on the property. The species is designated as “state endangered.”

Town Administrator Mark Bender tells The Telegraph the Department of Public Works stopped loam screening at the site. The town uses loam and sand from the property at cemeteries, parks and for winter road maintenance.

Fournier and her group have been pushing for more preservation of the 270-acre town-owned property, saying its combination of wetland, vernal pools and forested areas makes it an ideal for conservation.

She said in an email 17 Blanding’s turtles have been photographed at Brox.