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Your Association is run entirely by volunteers and in need of help on the education committee. Please contact us if you would like to help out. A very little time and effort can go a long way!! Do Good, Feel Good – read about how volunteering can help YOU.
After some brutal defoliation and tree mortality in the last few years, many of us are wondering how bad things will be this year. Fortunately early reports are pretty positive overall. The CT Agricultural Experiment Station’s annual egg mass survey showed much reduced numbers going into this summer. And early reports from foresters around eastern Connecticut mostly include terms like “sporadic”, “some pockets of moderate activity”, and “limited defoliation impact”.
In recent years, the most effective gypsy moth control agent has been a fungus call E.Maimaiga, which requires moist conditions in May and June to grow and infect large numbers of caterpillars. We have certainly had those conditions and are hopeful we’ll start seeing dead caterpillars any day because of the fungus. Best, Steve Broderick Eastern Connecticut Forest Landowners Association
The Last Green Valley Announces First Funding Phase of $12.2 Million Project
to Protect the Southern New England Heritage Forest
The Last Green Valley, Inc. and its project partners have launched phase one of a $12.2 million program to help landowners in the Southern New England Heritage Forest conserve their land while improving vital habitat for important bird species.
The program is an unprecedented three-state effort made possible through the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) of the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). Joining NRCS and The Last Green Valley, Inc. (TLGV) as lead partners are the Mass Conn Sustainable Forest Partnership/Opacum Land Trust and the Northern Rhode Island Conservation District.
This program will provide technical and financial assistance to forest landowners with property within the Southern New England Heritage Forest (SNEHF), who wish to conserve their land by granting an easement to NRCS through the Healthy Forests Reserve Program (HFRP). The HFRP is a voluntary conservation easement program for private woodland owners that is new to the region. The deadline for first-round applications is July 20, 2018.
Preserving the Southern New England Heritage Forest is critical for important bird species and other wildlife. With 1.49 million-acres of unfragmented forest corridor stretching along the Connecticut and Rhode Island border to the Quabbin Reservoir in Massachusetts, the Southern New England Heritage Forest is still an astonishing 76 percent forest cover and one of the last viable wildlife corridors from northern New England to the coast in southern New England.
The Last Green Valley National Heritage Corridor accounts for almost half of the Southern New England Heritage Forest. As the last green oasis in the coastal sprawl between Boston and Washington D.C., the program is vital to ensuring the national heritage corridor and the larger Southern New England Heritage Forest continue supporting threatened bird species and other important wildlife and plant species.
NRCS will pay the landowner 75 percent of the fair market value of the enrolled land to promote the recovery of endangered and threatened bird species and improve plant and animal biodiversity. NRCS will also pay for all transaction costs, including a title search, boundary survey, hazardous materials search and appraisal. NRCS will draft a restoration plan for the property that focuses on improving habitat for a specific bird species and will provide 75 percent or more of the funds for the first round of any restoration work that is required.
The funds provided in phase one are a portion of the larger $12.2 million program. NRCS is providing a $6.1 million grant which is being matched by $6.1 of significant contributions from the project’s numerous partners, including the three lead partner organizations and 16 additional organizations.
While the application deadline for the first round of this competitive program is July 20, 2018, we advise potential applicants to contact the lead partner in their state as soon as possible. There are preliminary steps that must be completed, and the partners are available to provide technical assistance:
For Connecticut Projects – Bill Reid, 860 774-3300; email@example.com
For Massachusetts Projects – Ed Hood, 508-347-9144 (leave a voice mail with your contact info); firstname.lastname@example.org
For Rhode Island Projects – Kate Sayles, 401-934-0840; email@example.com
Application materials are available on The Last Green Valley’s website, www.thelastgreenvalley.org
Supporting partners for this project include: MA Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, Providence Water, Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, CT Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, Hull Forest Products, Thames River Basin Partnership, New England Forestry Foundation, Eastern CT Conservation District, Norcross Wildlife Foundation, RI Division of Forest Management, RI Woodland Partnership, Harvard Forest, Yale Sustaining Family Forests Institute, Audubon Connecticut, Mass Audubon and Audubon RI.
The Last Green Valley National Heritage Corridor is the last stretch of dark night sky in the coastal sprawl between Boston and Washington, D.C. and was designated by the U.S. Congress in 1994. The Last Green Valley, Inc. works for you in the National Heritage Corridor. Together we can care for it, enjoy it and pass it along.
NEW MAPS OF WOLF DEN LAND TRUST/ECLFA PROPERTIES AVAILABLE ONLINE
New MAPS that you can click on or download are now available online for ECFLA properties. Some of the properties have a trail system, and are open to the public for passive recreation such as birding and day hiking. No motorized vehicles are allowed.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sV0GbPrZ4D8. See the Walktober tour with Hull Forester Mike Bartlett, discussing The Last Green Valley and landowner options for forest management and conservation.
Gypsy Moth Outbreak & Control: The Gypsy Moth is an invasive insect introduced to the U.S. in 1869. It has been spreading ever since. It was first seen in CT in 1905. Major outbreaks occurred in CT in the early 1970s and late 1980s, and again in 2005-2006.. In 2016 and 2017, a serious Gypsy Moth (Lymantria dispar) outbreak caused extensive damage to trees and shrubs in northeastern CT. The 2016 infestation was severe. In 2017, it was less severe but more widespread. If we have another dry spring and summer, damage to our forests could be devastating. See Woodstock Conservation webpage and Read more about ID and control options.
Reminder News article – Forest landowners learning best practices from ECFLA, 06/17/2013
Reminder News article – Foresters Preach Good Stewardship Practices, 11/04/2013
Earlier in the year the state of Connecticut imposed the first restrictions on movement of firewood as a result of a new invasive pest, the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), having been found in New Haven county. Those regulations continue to evolve, and include more counties, as more evidence of this pest is found. The current regulations govern the movement of firewood within Connecticut as well as firewood entering and leaving the state. The DEEP Division of Forestry has an excellent web page on this issue that provides the latest information, including explanatory maps. If you are interested check it out at: DEEP: Regulation on Movement of Firewood and CT map of spread of EAB in CT, along with a photo of the EAB.
For a truly fun and educational experience this fall, Steve Broderick of UCONN recommends checking out Chris Kueffner’s Connecticut Trees and Forests corn maze on Merrow Road in Mansfield (http://merrowmaze.com/). Folks of all ages will learn and enjoy.
The U.S. Forest Service State & Private Forestry Division has just published a new, weather-resistant, color illustrated, pocket-sized “Invasive Plants Field and Reference Guide: an ecological perspective of plant invaders of forests and woodlands.” To quote the introduction, “the purpose of this particular field guide is to give a scientific synthesis of what is known about the behavior of such species in managed, disturbed, and pristine forested systems, in addition to key information for accurate identification.” The guide includes an extensive list of citations of peer-reviewed research on each species for those who wish to learn more. The pages are bound in a steel-ring loose leaf format, and the Forest Service anticipates printing additional sheets that can be added to the guide. Single copies can be obtained by contacting Tom Rawinski at the U.S. Forest Service Durham New Hampshire office: (603)868-7642 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Steve Laume, a master woodworker in Chaplin, is volunteering to make bluebird nestboxes for sale at fairs ($8.00, including an educational brochure). For more information about how to attract bluebirds and maintain a bluebird trail, see Sialis.org.
ECFLA DONATES BLUEBIRD BOXES TO TRAIL DEDICATED TO ROBERT V. SMITH
A bluebird trail set up at the closed Woodstock Landfill includes boxes donated by ECFLA/WDLT. The trail is dedicated to Robert Smith, who built thousands of bluebirds boxes for ECFLA.
Cornell Cooperative Extension has a new publication to help communities address deer management problems: Community-Based Deer Management: A Practitioner’s Guide <http://cce.cornell.edu/store/customer/home.php>, by Daniel J. Decker, Daniela B. Raik, William F. Siemer. This guide synthesizes a growing body of research and field experience to describe specific key dimensions to consider when engaging in community-based deer management.
You can obtain a copy at the secure online bookstore: www.cce.cornell.edu/store, or call (607-255-2080) or fax (607-255-9946) your order with a valid credit card, or mail a check for $19.95 (includes shipping) to The Resource Center, Cornell Cooperative Extension, P.O. Box 3884, Ithaca, NY 17852-3884. Make your check payable to Cornell University. See list of other publications useful to forest landowners.
Researchers and foresters are concerned that Sudden Oak Death has the potential to have a catastrophic impact similar to that of Dutch Elm Disease or Chestnut Blight. Sudden Oak Death has never been found in the wild in the eastern United States. To date, it has been found only on nursery stock in nurseries. The CT Agricultural Experiment Station has now confirmed that Sudden Oak Death has been imported into Connecticut on infected nursery stock, which was then sold and planted in the environment. For more information see a DEP Forestry advisory at http://ecfla.org/sod.htm.
Public Act 03-276 requires that operators of snowmobiles or all terrain vehicles, when operating such a vehicle on any lands, fenced and/or posted or otherwise, obtain written permission and carry such permission on their person while operating such vehicles on such properties. (Effective date: 7/1/03.) “NO ATV” signs will be available for sale at the ECFLA/WDLT booths at the 2004 Brooklyn and Woodstock Fairs, for $4 each, or 3 for $10 while supplies last. For more info, click here. Also see Dennis Hodgin’s article: Connecticut’s Worst Invasive Species – ATVs.
Photo by Cherie Layton, The BluebirdNut