The Northern New England Pollinator Habitat Working Group

A multistate, multidisciplinary working group has been established to share information, assess critical research and outreach needs, and identify emerging issues in conservation, maintenance, and enhancement of pollinator habitat across northern New England (Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Vermont). Factors that threaten pollinators and their habitat in this highly-forested region may differ from those in other parts of the country.

Managing the Barber Reservation

Lying within the urbanized area of the greater Boston metropolitan area is Sherborn, a small town that prides itself on its rural character and abundant open spaces. One of the large open spaces in the town is the Barber Reservation, a 200-acre town-owned forest. This management plan provides the Sherborn Conservation Commission with vision alternatives for the Barber Reservation, and identifies a plan to integrate utility corridor maintenance with the needs of the residents and wildlife that use the site. Design features and management recommendations include details for a native meadow establishment, a parking area schematic design, invasive species management, forestry recommendation, and trail re-design.

Lead Mills Conservation Area Design

The Lead Mills site is an historic parcel of land jointly owned by the Town of Marblehead and the City of Salem, Massachusetts, located at the confluence of the Forest River and Salem Harbor. The site was historically an industrial hub for both communities, and most notably home to lead mills that have heavily impacted the soils on site with lead contamination. The Lead Mills parcel became conservation area, and went through a series of remediation techniques to stabilize the site’s lead-impacted soils. There are still limitations to the uses of the site due to the fragility of the stabilized soils and the establishing vegetation. The final design provides over two acres of grass-and-meadow-lands that require minimal maintenance once established, and combined with an acre of shrubs, the site mimics the stages of forest succession offering needed habitat and food for migratory birds. A universally accessible loop trail that is approximately one third of a mile takes visitors through the site and offers gathering and picnic spaces as well as views of Salem Harbor. There are also signs that tell the history of the site and guide visitors to neighboring conservation properties and their trail systems.

Mass Audubon Urgent Land Projects

Tidmarsh Wildlife Sanctuary

Mass Audubon is working to make Tidmarsh Farms, a former cranberry farm in Plymouth that was recently restored to its natural state, the next Mass Audubon wildlife sanctuary. Tidmarsh Wildlife Sanctuary will be a living laboratory and provide a unique opportunity to show visitors firsthand what happens when you allow nature to return to its former glory

The Southeastern Massachusetts Pine Barrens Alliance 

The Southeastern Massachusetts Pine Barrens Alliance, Inc. (SEMPBA) is a recently formed non–profit volunteer group dedicated to preserving the globally rare eco region of the Coastal Atlantic Pine Barrens of southeastern Massachusetts. The region contains the world’s 2nd largest remaining Pine Barrens habitat that supports a number of threatened or endangered animal and plant species, some of which occur only in southeastern Massachusetts.