Severe winds have taken their toll on land trust properties in recent years, and we are surveying our lands now for any damage that might have been caused by Tropical Storm Isaias. Thanks to site steward Alan Henry, we already have one report of a downed tree blocking the Charlie Wyman Loop Trail on the Richardson Nature Preserve. Volunteers will be clearing the trail in the next few days.
On Tuesday, May 26, a work party of nine volunteers helped with the maintenance of Nickerson Walking Woods Preserve. The work was peformed with coronavirus precautions and the size of the group was limited to a maximum of ten people.
Most of the work focused on the meadow, which had become overgrown with invasive buckthorn saplings.
The invasive plants were removed by the roots to prevent them from growing back.
One of our volunteers helped to extend the life of a boardwalk by removing leaves and dirt that had collected between the slats.
If you would like to help with future work parties, contact us.
On Saturday, March 7, 2020, a group of volunteers walked the boundaries of the Nickerson Walking Woods Preserve. The purpose of the walk was to inspect the condition of the preserve, check for any encroachment of the boundaries, and find existing boundary markers. From the parking area on Richardson Avenue, we headed for the far corners of the property.
A snowfall the previous night had added a sparkle to the landscape.
We added a sign with our visitor regulations.
We walked the entire length of the power line easement from south to north.
We put up another regulation sign at the edge of the power line along our northern boundary.
Thanks to all who attended the walk!
A series of boundary walks was planned for the first three Saturdays in March, weather permitting. The purpose of boundary walks is to maintain signs and markers along the boundaries and to check for encroachment.
The first boundary walk was held at the Nickerson Walking Woods Preserve, 221 Richardson Avenue, on Saturday, March 7.
Invasive species are organisms that are not native to an area, that tend to spread and displace native species, and that have harmful consequences for the environment. Invasive species include animals, plants, and even fungi. In the twentieth century, diseases caused by non-native fungi–accidentally introduced in North America–devastated elm and chestnut trees. Invasive gypsy moths have damaged many other local tree species.
Invasive trees and shrubs are common in our area and threaten to crowd out native plants–wreaking havoc with native ecosystems. The Attleboro Land Trust has launched an invasive removal project focusing on Larson Woodland. At four acres, this is one of our smaller nature preserves. This will serve as a demonstration project, and we hope to apply lessons learned to our other preserves.
A survey of the preserve was conducted by Gary Krofta and Phil Boucher, resulting in a map identifying the invasive species to be targeted and their locations. Longtime watershed protection advocate Don Doucette has been a key advisor. The project was kicked off on Saturday, November 23. Among the volunteers who pitched in was a contingent of Scouts from Attleboro Troop 15.
Oriental bittersweet was removed from the banks of the Ten Mile River near the spillway. The bright red berries (once prized for their decorative value during the winter holidays) were bagged and will be burned to prevent propagation of new plants.
Some large non-native honeysuckle bushes along Riverbank Road were also removed.
Project work parties will continue in the spring. Some of the other species to be targeted are buckthorn, purple loosestrife, and Norway maple. We welcome more volunteers to help with the work.
A site steward is a volunteer who “adopts” one of the Attleboro Land Trust nature preserves, individually or with a group, such as a group of neighbors, church group, youth group, or fraternal organization.
Duties of a site steward:
- Walk the property on a regular basis
- Pick up litter
- Report vandalism and violations of ALT regulations
- Help with routine trail maintenance
- Assist with special projects
Volunteers are needed on Saturday, August 17, from 9:00 am to 12:00 noon to help clear brush along trails at the Anthony Lawrence Wildlife Preserve, located at the end of Hope Avenue off Newport Avenue. This gem of a preserve includes a pristine marsh along the Seven Mile River. Bring loppers and other brush cutting tools if you have them. Work gloves are recommended, along with long sleeve shirts, long pants, and socks for protection from poison ivy and insects. If you can bring a lawn mower or weed wacker, please let us know. Feel free to attend for just an hour or two as your schedule allows.
Proceeding on Route 123 west you will pass the South Attleboro American Legion on your right. Hope Avenue is the next left. Park on the right side of the street as you approach the end of Hope Avenue. Please try to avoid blocking any of the neighbors’ mailboxes. Rain date: Saturday, August 24.
The city’s 13th annual Ten Mile River Clean-Up will be held from 8 to 11 a.m. on Saturday, May 4, rain or shine.
Volunteers are needed to help clean up along the river banks and walking trails.
Sign-up will be at the Community Garden on Riverbank Road, just off Hayward Street. Trash bags will be available.
Free refreshments will be supplied by Dunkin Donuts.
Sponsors include Mayor Paul Heroux, the Attleboro Land Trust, the Conservation Commission, Friends of the Ten Mile River, and Dunkin Donuts.
Volunteers and groups can sign up on the day of the clean-up.
On September 22, volunteers from the Ten Mile River Watershed Council assisted ranger Jacob Gorke of the Woonasquatucket River Watershed Council of Rhode Island in conducting a survey of fish species in the Ten Mile River at Larson Woodland.
The fish are stunned temporarily with an electric shock, netted and removed to be identified, then released back to the river. The survey is conducted annually.
This is just one of many activities conducted year round by the Ten Mile River Watershed Council to promote and protect the river. For more information, contact Keith Gonsalves Keith@tenmileriver.net.
Although we thought we had completed the boardwalks at the Richardson Nature Preserve a year ago, last winter’s storms told a different story. You may remember that one storm took out the Wilmarth Street bridge over Chartley Brook. Freezing, thawing, and flooding all took their toll on one of our boardwalks. Repairs were made in the spring. On December 1, a volunteer crew completed additional work to raise the boardwalk by six inches. The crew consisted of (from left to right) Charlie Adler, Phil Boucher, Bruce Ingram, Bill Lewis, Dick Cheyne, and (not pictured) Russ Pray and Jim Keiper. Since then, further structural support has been added. We have our fingers crossed that we will get through this winter without any further difficulties. Mother Nature, of course, will have the last word!