Dear Acton Conservation Trust Members and Other Friends,
Many thanks to everyone who turned out for ACT Annual Meeting and came away inspired by landscape ecologist, Claudia Thompson, founder of Grow Native Massachusetts. She reminded us that over the last 30 years that we have lost 3 billion birds from North America; birds are a good indicator of the health of our planet. She gave a relatable example showing us what she has accomplished in her 7000 sf garden in Cambridge. To learn more, visit grownativemass.org
The following news and events may be of interest:
Friday, March 17- September 5
New Exhibit: Alive with Birds: William Brewster in Concord
Thursday to Sunday, 10 am to 4 PM, Walk ins welcome!
Concord Museum, 53 Cambridge Turnpike, Concord, MA
Visit this special exhibition to discover the beauty of birds. William Brewster (1851-1919) was Mass Audubon’s first President He dedicated over thirty years of his life to the study of birds in Concord at his property, which he called October Farm. Drawn to Concord for its natural beauty and abundant bird life, Brewster made October Farm his experimental field laboratory and documented its wildlife for scientific study and public enlightenment. In 2019, Mass Audubon received a 143 acre parcel of land which was once part of October Farm, which has been renamed Brewster’s Woods Wildlife Sanctuary. For more information visit their website.
Members free; Adults $15, Seniors $12, Children (6 to 17) $8
(The Boston Globe also published an article last Sunday, 3/13/22, “A unique celebration of the Birdman of Concord”)
Thursday, March 17
Wildflowers of Spring and Summer
Neela de Zoysa, long-time instructor for the Native Plant Trust will get you ready for Spring!
This online class will introduce you to the wild beauties blooming in the woods, wetlands and meadows of Sudbury and surrounding areas. Learn about early spring’s marsh marigolds and late spring’s lady slipper orchids. The humid summer brings wild lilies, milkweed and cardinal flowers. Make the most of your time outdoors by recognizing wildflowers, their habitats and pollinators. You will get tips on wildflower identification guides and best locations to observe these flowers. Co-Sponsored by Sudbury Conservation Commission, Sudbury Valley Trustees & Friends of the Assabet River National Wildlife Refuge. Price: $35, Enroll Now
Thursday, March 17
The Massachusetts Pollinator Network & NOFA/Mass Present: Creating Pollinator Habitat through the USDA-NRCS Program
Due to drastic and widespread declines in bees, butterflies, and other pollinating insects, pollinator conservation has become a national priority. Producers and other land stewards in New England can play an important role reversing the decline of pollinators. This webinar will provide an overview of creating and protecting pollinator habitat on working lands, practices that can be used to support pollinators, additional benefits of improving biodiversity, and USDA-NRCS programs that offer technical and financial assistance for implementing conservation practices that address wildlife and invertebrate resource concerns.Read more about the program and our speakers Kelly Gill and Emily May, Pollinator Conservation Specialists with the Xerces Society **by clicking here.**
Sunday, March 18, 2022
Full Worm Moon
Reaches peak illumination at 3:20 AM EDT.
Look for the spectacularly bright Moon as it rises above the horizon that evening! The Worm Moon, was originally thought to refer to the earthworms that appear as the soil warms in spring. This invites robins and other birds to feed – a true sign of spring! This Moon is known as the Lenten Moon if it is the last full Moon of the winter season (i.e., if it occurs before the spring equinox)
Sunday, March 20
Spring Hike at Newtown Hill and Williams Land, Littleton, MA
Newtown Hill, Littleton, MA
Come and walk the trails at Newtown Hill and the somewhat lesser known Williams Land. Be prepared for mud in some areas and if we are still getting snow, bring micro-spikes? This hike will be led by trustees, Melinda Hobausz and Alyssa Russell, of the Littleton Conservation Trust Registration is required. Register at the Littleton Conservation Trust website.
Tuesday, March 22
Vesper Flights: A Conversation with Helen Macdonald
H is for Hawk memoirist, Helen Macdonald, will discuss her newest collection of essays, Vesper Flights in which she reflects on “the numinous” of nature – those moments where mystery arises from the meeting of human art and unpredictable natural phenomena.:
Register here. Sponsored by the Concord Museum
Wednesday, March 23
Public Forum to Discuss the Proposed Archaeology Bylaw
Online Zoom meeting * https://actonma.zoom.us/j/83311551661 Or phone into the meeting at: 1-646-876-9923.
GUEST SPEAKER: Duncan Ritchie of the Public Archaeology Laboratory, Inc. (PAL) will describe PAL’s 2008 archaeological reconnaissance survey in Acton and its findings.
MEETING FOCUS: The Acton Historical Commission is bringing a proposal to this year’s Town Meeting to create a town Archaeology Bylaw. This proposed bylaw would add a step to the permitting process for development of undisturbed land within areas that have a high or moderate probability of containing archaeological artifacts. We invite you to attend this public meeting, which will present the results of a recent town-wide Archaeology Bylaw Survey and go over the scope and intent of the proposed bylaw in detail. *The Zoom meeting link may also be obtained by going to the Town of Acton’s website, www.actonma.gov and finding the Acton Historical Commission’s notice for 3/23/2022.
Wednesday, March 23, 30 and April 6
Make Your Land Available for Farming
Register for free at landforgood.org/events
Make Your Land Available for Farming is for private landowners and their representatives (real estate agents, etc.) to understand your land’s potential for farming, learn what goes into good farming arrangement, and explore strategies for making any amount of land available to a farmer. When you make land available for farming you help secure a future for farming in your community. Farmers are looking for land, from a small vegetable plot to livestock or crops. Productive, sustainable uses for all or parts of your property can bring many rewards!
Tuesday, March 29
Boxborough Conservation Trust Annual Meeting: Nature’s Best Hope with Doug Tallamy!
Introduction by President, Rita Gibes Grossman, and an update about the potential to purchase 21 acres of conservation land in town.
Dr. Doug Tallamy, professor of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware, will talk about planting natives and regenerating biodiversity at home, one yard at a time. The goal is to create landscapes that enhance local ecosystems in half of the area now in lawn to create vital corridors connecting the few natural areas that remain. This approach to conservation empowers everyone to play a significant role in the future of the natural world. Free and open to the public. For more information click here.
Tuesday, March 29
A Conversation with Ornithologist Scott Edwards
In-Person and Virtual Forum
Harvard professor and Curator of Ornithology at the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Scott Edwards, discusses his research on the processes that have generated biodiversity using birds as models to study patterns of speciation, biogeography , evolution of the genome, and the process of adaptation. Register here. Sponsored by Concord Museum
Boston Area Gleaners (BAG) is back to grocery box packing next week! Join them in their greenhouse on Wednesday, 3/23 to prepare mixed produce boxes for delivery to community food programs. Sign up to volunteer at https://www.bagetc.org/gleanlist.php
9 AM-noon: Pack grocery boxes
1-4 PM Pack grocery boxes
Town of Littleton Conservation Department
Amphibian Crossing Brigade Handbook 2022
How you can help amphibians on the road – https://www.mass.gov/news/watch-for-amphibians-on-the-road
- Please drive cautiously and carefully.
- Whenever possible over the next 2 months, please consider not driving on rainy nights when air temperatures are 40°F or higher. If you must travel during such conditions, delaying beyond the first 2 hours after sunset is recommended.
- Travel on larger highways rather than small, wooded roads if possible. Plan routes that minimize the number of wetlands or vernal pools passed.
- If observing amphibian migrations, consider arriving at your destination prior to sunset, and then conduct your monitoring on foot.
- If assisting amphibians across roadways or handling them for other reasons, be sure your hands are free of lotions, bug repellent, or other chemicals.
- Report high levels of amphibian activity or mortality to the Linking Landscapes for Massachusetts Wildlife initiative, which compiles data to reduce wildlife-vehicle collisions on problem roadways.
- If you encounter any of our state-listed rare amphibian species (eastern spadefoot, blue-spotted salamander, Jefferson salamander, and marbled salamander), please take a clear photograph of the animal, carefully record the location, and submit an observation report to MassWildlife’s Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program.
- Go the extra mile to help preserve amphibian habitat by certifying vernal pools on your property. The data you collect is used to help MassWildlife and local conservation organizations better understand habitat resources for our native amphibians.
Goat Hikes – Good Pickin’ Farm
5 Gould Road, Westford
Goat Hikes. $65/group up to 8 people. Informative nature hike led by an ecologist, focusing on different flora or fauna of the area that is seasonal. Have fun while the goats walk and run along with you and enjoy their silly antics! For more information call 425-306-7203 or email email@example.com
March Through May
Join Central Mass. Goat Rental for a Walk with Goats
48 West Acres Drive, Lunenberg
Take to the trails with friendly farm animals at your side. Anywhere from 6 to 16 goats will go on the hikes. Goats have a natural instinct to follow the leader, which makes them perfect hiking companions. The hike is relatively easy, lasting about an hour. Masks and social distance are required and group size is limited due to Covid-19. Each hike costs $35 per adult, $10 per child (under the age of 15 years old), and children ages 5 years and under are free. To book a hike, visit www.centralmagoatrental.com and choose the date of your hike.
Hiking with Dogs – The Trustees Did you and your family get a pandemic puppy? Are you and your older dog a little tired of the same old walking routes? Let our dog-friendly properties give you a burst of inspiration to get some fresh air for you and your four-footed companion. These 7 places might be just the thing this spring.
Support Acton Conservation Trust while you make purchases on AmazonSmile! ACT will receive a small payment, and these add up! From your desktop or laptop computer, AmazonSmile is available at at smile.amazon.com on your Web browser. Bookmark it for easy use! AmazonSmile is available from your mobile phone as well. To activate AmazonSmile in the Amazon Shopping app, simply tap on “AmazonSmile” within the Programs & Features menu or Settings and follow the on-screen instructions.
President, Acton Conservation Trust
P.S. Welcome to new “Events of Interest” subscribers! As a nonprofit organization, we rely upon the support of our members. Visit our ACT website, and click on “Join Us”!
Be sure to tell your friends that “Events of Interest” is also available on our new ACT website www.actonconservationtrust.org