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Citizen involvement in wetland restoration


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Citizen involvement in wetland restoration

  1. 1. Citizen Involvement in Wetland Restoration: The Canoga Marsh Example<br />Keith G. Tidball<br />Canoga Creek Farm & Conservancy<br />&<br />Cornell University Civic Ecology Lab<br />April 2010<br />Cayuga Lake Watershed Network Spring Seminar<br />Kuneytown Sportsmen’s Club<br /> Fayette, NY<br />
  2. 2. Starting conditions<br />"Greater familiarity with marshes on the part of more people could give man a truer and more wholesome view of himself in relation to Nature. In marshes, Life's undercurrents and unknowns and evolutionary changes are exemplified with a high degree of independence from human dominance as long as the marshes remain in marshy condition. Marshes comprise their own form of wilderness. They have their own life-rich genuineness and reflect forces that are much older, much more permanent, and much mightier than man.”<br /> Paul L. Errington1<br />1. OF MEN AND MARSHES, Paul L. Errington. The Iowa State University Press, Ames; 1957; 150 p.<br />
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  4. 4.
  5. 5. Starting Conditions<br />Background<br />
  6. 6. Starting Conditions<br />
  7. 7. Starting Conditions<br />We set some goals<br /><ul><li>restore lost wetland functions 
  8. 8. potholes and level ditches create openings in wetland
  9. 9. habitat value  
  10. 10. plant diversity
  11. 11. submerged aquatic veg
  12. 12. amphibians and macro-invertebrates 
  13. 13. waterfowl brood rearing
  14. 14. visibility of wildlife for public enjoyment and education
  15. 15. demonstration area for wetland enhancement</li></li></ul><li>Starting Conditions<br />Assessment by DEC wildlife biologists<br />Class I wetland, 134.4 acre, degraded, dense mono-cultural cattail marsh <br />Steep vertical drop at common lake levels restricts wildlife<br />Purple loosestrife present throughout, not dominant.  <br />Upland fringe includes burr reed, silky dogwood, green ash saplings, & willows<br />Distinct areas of mature green ash and cottonwood<br />Substrates are hydric organic soils<br />characterized in the Seneca County Soil Survey as: shallow, inundated areas around lakes and ponded areas, bottom-land and alluvial deposits, covered by water most of the year.<br />Adjacent, upland area in row crop production (soybeans in 2003, corn in 2004 and 2005)<br />Two well-defined erosion gullies are present, flowing eastward to the wetland boundary. <br /> The drop off from upland to marsh is steep (1 to 1 slope) and ranges from 4 to 8 feet.<br />
  16. 16. Starting Conditions<br />USDA NRCS Wetland Reserve Program<br />USFWS Partners for Wildlife Program<br />
  17. 17. Starting Conditions<br />DEC Wildlife Biologists surveyed the area and made recommendations<br />We had the property surveyed<br /> to outline easement area<br />A Plan finalized<br />
  18. 18. Breaking Ground<br />Ducks Unlimited, through the US Fish and Wildlife Service, contributed 25% of the total cost of restoration of the Tidball/Canoga Marsh project, more than $10,000 for the ducks and their habitat!<br />Photo courtesy of Elon Weinstein<br />
  19. 19. Breaking Ground<br />Warm season grass establishment provided by Pheasants forever and Cayuga County SWCD (no-till seed drilling)<br />Switchgrass 50 lbs<br />Big Bluestem 150 lbs<br />Indiangrass 50 lbs<br />Eastern Gamagrass 46 lbs<br />Virginia Wildrye 53 lbs<br />Little Bluestem 50 lbs<br />
  20. 20. "The last word in ignorance is the man who says of an animal or plant, "What good is it?" If the land mechanism as a whole is good, then every part is good, whether we understand it or not. If the biota, in the course of aeons, has built something we like but do not understand, then who but a fool would discard seemingly useless parts? To keep every cog and wheel is the first precaution of intelligent tinkering." — Aldo Leopold (Round River: From the Journals of Aldo Leopold)<br />
  21. 21. Restoration <br />
  22. 22. Restoration<br />
  23. 23. Restoration<br />
  24. 24. Restoration<br />
  25. 25. Restoration<br />
  26. 26. Restoration<br />
  27. 27. Restoration<br />
  28. 28. Results Reporting<br />
  29. 29. Results Reporting<br />
  30. 30. Results Reporting<br />
  31. 31. Before<br />
  32. 32. ...After<br />State WMA<br />Property<br />Boundary<br />Tidball Farm<br />Private Land<br />
  33. 33. Thank you!<br />