The Ninevah Foundation promotes outdoor and environmental education by leasing land to the Farm & Wilderness camps and working with our allies to offer educational forums and materials for the public, as listed in News & Events below.
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August 4, 2:30-4:00
Mount Holly School
What surprises did nature have in store when Vermont ecologist Brett Engstrom surveyed Lake Ninevah and the 3,300 acres of conserved land surrounding it? Dozens of Mount Holly residents gathered to learn the answers, when Brett discussed his remarkable two-year inventory of the ecological resources of the Lake Ninevah area.
The event, hosted by the Ninevah Foundation, also celebrated the joining of forces with the Farm & Wilderness Foundation in service of stewarding the environment and educating young people. Representatives of both organizations were on hand to answer questions and to hear feedback from the Mount Holly community about conserving Lake Ninevah and its surroundings.
To learn more about the ecological inventory and see the maps created from the project, click here.
The Ninevah Foundation needs your input for a first-ever inventory of the 3,200 acres we conserve around Lake Ninevah. Much of the information you help us gather – about flora, fauna, geographical features and such – will be compiled in an ecological inventory that we have commissioned. Ecologist Brett Engstrom, who is overseeing the project, has framed most of the questions below.
But we are also taking this opportunity to learn more about historical sites and favorite recreational spots. Please take a few minutes to tell us about your discoveries in the area around Lake Ninevah. We will share the results of the survey with everyone who’s interested. Yes, this is crowdsourcing!
Using the questionnaire below, describe what you’ve seen and where, take a picture, use your GPS if you have one – the more “concrete” information the better. Please write your answers to these questions on a separate sheet of paper and bring it along with any photos to the NINEVAH NEIGHBORS NETWORK potluck dinner, August 6 at 5:30 in Blakely Meadow. Together we will mark maps to pinpoint places of interest.
If you can’t come to the August 6 get-together, please send your answers to NinevahFoundation@gmail.com. We will share the results with everyone interested.
1. Interesting animals: mountain lions, bobcats, otters, turtles, salamanders, etc. Interesting birds, nests or nesting sites such as osprey nests or a heron rookery
2. Signs of wildlife presence:
Moose or deer (hoof prints or scat)
Beech tree stands marked by bear
Frog and salamander breeding sites: tadpoles, egg masses, places where frogs/salamanders cross roads on rainy nights
Fisher or otter tracks
3. Trees: Unusual species like red pine, hemlock, spruce. Big trees, old forests, old apple orchards
4. Rich woods where spring ephemerals appear: maidenhair fern, trout lily, spring beauties, Dutchman’s breeches, blue cohosh, wild ginger
5. Rich wildflower sites, amazing ferns, any plants that seem unusual or catch your attention
6. Geographical features: little gorges, ledges big and small, cliffs, rock or talus (broken rock debris) fields, glades or openings in woods that seem to be of natural origin
7. Watery areas: springs, seeps, swamps, remote wetlands, vernal pools (basins that fill with snow and ice melt in season, and dry up in summer)
8. Historical sites: old cellar holes, abandoned logging roads, any evidence of former farming community, etc.
9. Favorite trails/woods roads for hiking, biking, cross country skiing, spots to linger or picnic, favorite views or unusual landforms.
10. Anything else
Your name ______________________________________________
Your email address _____________________________________
Chris Bernier, head of the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department’s Furbearer Management Program, led this comprehensive and thought-provoking program on the responsible trapping of Vermont’s furbearing mammals. Forum participants, ranging from trappers to local conservationists and summer visitors, learned how trapping contributes to the science of wildlife population management and protection of endangered species. Bernier also made a case for the fur trade, noting that, unlike some materials that humans wear for warmth, such as synthetic fleece, responsibly harvested fur is a sustainable resource.
Dozens of people flocked (so to speak) to this fascinating forum to learn why some of Vermont’s nesting songbirds have declined dramatically in recent years. Chris Rimmer, conservation biologist and Executive Director of the Vermont Center for Ecostudies, gave an engaging presentation on the threats to songbirds and how scientists are working to “keep them common.”
Sara Zahendra proved that she truly is the “Queen Bee” of the Vermont Center for Ecostudies, with her dynamic program about the bumblebee. We learned all about life in a bumblebee colony, why these cute, fuzzy pollinators are at risk, and what we can do about it. (Plant more flowers!)