RECENT ACTIVITIES 2016
Hellen Creek is a great place
for birds to nest. Bald Eagles use the creek and often nest
nearby the Preserve. The number of Wild Turkeys has been
increasing. We added wood duck boxes this spring, but were a
little late for this year’s occupation. We hope for better luck
Several field trips including
one with Calvert Nature Society took place on the Preserve in
2016. We installed some posts to help make interior access from
the footbridge easier.
The Children’s Garden at
Calvert Marine Museum was installed and is in its second
Our support for scientific
research included the annual plant monitoring at Cove Point and
an ongoing effort to measure and track the horseshoe crab
population at the beach. We partnered with Calvert Nature
Society to sponsor three lectures in 2015 and 2016. Paul
Bushmann presented his efforts on horseshoe crab surveys at Cove
Point at their annual meeting.
The Ruth Mathes Scholarship
fund continues to support students at St. Mary’s College, Morgan
State, the College of Southern Maryland, and University of
Maryland Center for Environmental Science in Solomons. The Trust
funded the Calvert County non-tidal water monitoring program for
the fifth year. St. Mary’s River Watershed Association program
Future Bay Leaders was funded for its third year.
In 2016 we continued to pursue
acquisition of the adjacent TNC’s Hemlock Preserve. The Trust
also sponsored a Calvert County land preservation workshop.
Calvert County is working
on the update of their Comprehensive Plan. One of the
groups seeking to have input is a coalition group called
Sustainable Calvert Network. We are a member of that
group and I represent us at their meetings. I have
attended several listening sessions on the Plan,
including one on the recreation and parks section. We
encourage everyone to attend the April 6th meeting at
the College of Southern Maryland (Prince Frederick
campus) meeting which will focus on natural resources.
The doors open at 6:30 p.m.
We are a charter member
of the Calvert Citizen’s Green Team. We are planning for
the upcoming Calvert Green Expo to be held on Saturday
June 3 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Annmarie Gardens. The
event will feature more than 100 booths with leaders and
educators in green living. You can see the recent
developments in renewable energy and green technology,
learn how to lower home energy costs, harness solar
power, find green products for your home and business,
plant a healthier garden, and compost your waste.
March was the first
meeting of Calvert County’s Land Preservation Committee.
We were introduced to the new Rural Planner Lindsay
Halterman. Rural Legacy and other programs deadlines
were discussed. We are looking to coming up with a
prioritized list of properties for preservation.
Chesapeake Public Charter
School invited me to introduce their second grade
classes to the joys of bird watching. They are
participating in National Audubon Society’s Project
Feeder Watch again this year and I introduce them to the
local birds and use of a field guide. A delightful
mixture of enthusiasm and interest greets me each time I
visit this school.
January 14th was my
annual Master Gardener Garden Smarter program. This year
my program was “Creating a Habitat with Native Plants”,
held at the Southern Branch of the Calvert County
library. The Neighbors and Newcomers Group of Southern
Maryland invited me to give a lunch time presentation at
Ruddy Duck four days later. Some thirty ladies were in
attendance to hear about the where and what Cove Point
Natural Heritage Trust is.
February found me at the
Maryland Association of Environmental and Outdoor
Educators annual conference. In addition to attending
several excellent workshops, I did one of my own. An
overflow audience heard “A Low Tech Approach to Bird
Watching”. The highlight of the conference for me was
meeting an educator who credited me and the Hollywood
Learning Enrichment Afterschool Program I taught her
with putting her on the path to teaching science.
At the end of February
the fifth annual Master Naturalist classes began. This
program teaches individuals about the various aspects of
natural history in the coastal plains of Maryland. This
year’s group has 22 students. St. Mary’s County
initiated their inaugural program this year. We
cosponsor the Calvert program and provide guidance and
funding for the St. Mary’s program though a grant with
the Maryland Department of Agriculture.
In March we sponsored the
annual winter lecture for Calvert Nature Society
featuring Mike Raupp’s talk “Bugs Make the World Go
Round”. The audience was entertained by the lively
discussion and excellent photography and videos of bugs
in action. He also had copies of his children’s book and
26 Things That Bug Me.
In January the board
approved our fifth year of funding the Future Bay
Leaders program. This effort by the St. Mary’s Watershed
Association has trained dozens of high school and
college students in running restoration projects
including oyster replenishment and construction of rain
In March the board
accepted the final reports of Brent Steury monitoring
the plant communities at the Cove Point marsh and Paul
Bushmann’s horseshoe crab surveys. You can read their
findings and previous years efforts in the Complete
Studies section of this webpage. The board approved
funding for both efforts for the 2017 season.
The board also approved
funding for Calvert County’s non-tidal water monitoring
effort. This is our sixth year of funding and
volunteering to aid in the data collection.