The Ninevah Foundation has implemented a multi-pronged strategy to conserve the Lake Ninevah area’s precious land and water resources.
FORESTS, MOUNTAINS, AND MEADOWS
In collaboration with a professional forester, the Ninevah Foundation manages its land using established conservation practices for forestry and wildlife habitat management. Recently, the Ninevah Foundation has worked with the United States Department of Agriculture’s local Natural Resource Conservation Service as well as the Farm and Wilderness Foundation on the following activities:
- Maintaining 12 acres of wildlife openings through controlled burning and through mowing
- Creating erosion controls on woods roads
- Organizing timely and targeted timber stand improvements, so that high-quality trees can grow faster because of reduced competition from less valuable trees, and timber harvests to ensure better-quality tree growth
- Nurturing the spread of sturdy blueberry bushes on Proctor Hill by using controlled burning and post-berry-season mowing
- Instituting preventative measures to reduce the chances of harm from the Emerald Ash Borer beetle, an invasive pest currently found in eastern New York state and in Quebec province
- Improving the growing conditions for wild apple trees, through apple tree release and pruning, in order to provide and maintain early-successional habitats. Click here to see information from the USDA on apple tree release programs (PDF, 318K).
To ensure perpetual conservation of its lands and broaden its reach, the Ninevah Foundation also owns land that is enrolled in public conservation programs (PDF, 36K) and holds conservation easements for landowners who retain the remaining property rights. The vast majority of the Foundation’s lands are managed according to a stewardship plan that is approved by the county forester.
LAKES, STREAMS, AND WETLANDS
The Foundation leads water quality maintenance for Lake Ninevah. By hiring scuba divers and training monitors to carry out surveillance and public education, the Ninevah Foundation has successfully contained infestations of Eurasian watermilfoil and maintains a vigil for other aquatic nuisances.
For the scientifically minded, here are some additional resources published by the state of Vermont that illustrate the success of the Ninevah Foundation’s efforts:
- Click here to view the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Water Quality Scorecard for Lake Ninevah.
- The DEC website also offers a Google Earth map and lots of interesting data about Lake Ninevah through the Lakes and Ponds Management and Protection Section.
- Click here to download the Vermont DEC Wetlands Office’s 2010 wetland and lab reports (PDF, 252K), which show that the wetland to the south of the western end of Patch Brook Road (known locally as the “golden rectangle”) were “in very good condition & the plant species were very diverse and healthy.” The lab report shows no water quality concerns were present as of December 2010.
Using a variety of land protection tools — in keeping with the principles of America’s Great Outdoors Initiative — the Ninevah Foundation’s preservation work continues to expand.