Topics: Conservation

New Osprey Nesting Platform Provides Waterfront Accommodations

By: Staff Reports and Contributors

SOUTH HARWICH — Some high-profile seasonal visitors to town will enjoy new waterfront accommodations next spring, thanks to the Harwich Conservation Trust and AmeriCorps Cape Cod. Last Thursday, volunteers erected a new osprey nesting platform on conservation land in the salt marsh behind Red River Beach. Funded by a donor to the Trust, the platform was assembled in the beach parking lot, carried across the ma...

HARWICH — Twenty years ago this month, in a bid to stop a rush of residential development and the groundwater pollution it would bring, Harwich officials took a gamble on a new regulatory tool. In creating the Six Ponds District of Critical Planning Concern, or DCPC, and the zoning rules that followed, they rolled the political dice and hoped voters wouldn’t see the move as a government land grab. Two decades ...

CHATHAM – The conservation commission has referred the removal of 62 trees from a coastal bank without a permit to the state department of environmental protection for enforcement. The trees, some of which were 24 inches in diameter, were removed on June 2 from the coastal bank at 107 Taylor's Pond Rd., overlooking Mill Creek. The property is owned by 107 Taylor's Pond Road Real Estate Trust, which lists Byran...

CHATHAM – A sign posted at the front desk of the Chatham Agway store reassures customers that the ducks that live on the pond in front of the Main Street garden center aren't being harmed during restoration work on the small body of water. People still ask about the ducks, store employees say, but in fact, although they remain on site during the work, it's had little impact on them. When heavy equipment is ope...

HARWICH — The proposal by Monomoy Regional High School Junior Lily Daniels-Diehl to revegetate and restore the wildlife habitat in Brooks Park Hollow, damaged by a tornado in July, was greeted with unanimous support by the Recreation and Youth Commission. Daniels-Diehl has developed a comprehensive proposal through her Global Studies Program to revitalize the hollow, which lost dozens of trees when the July 23...

Pecks’ Pond Parcels Interest Open Space Committee

By: Ed Maroney

ORLEANS — For decades, the Peck family has been stewards of the hillside that runs down to Arey’s Pond and the Namequoit River, said to be the site of the town’s last Indian meetinghouse. In 2006, they sold the town 8.2 acres that became the Marion Hadley and Samuel Watson Peck Conservation Area. Last week, three members of the town’s open space committee tramped through the lightly-wooded north two acres of...

ORLEANS — Chairman Ron Petersen admits that most people think of the historical commission as working to preserve the historic buildings of the town, and that’s a big part of its mandate. But in a talk last month hosted by the Orleans Conservation Trust, Petersen noted that the commission’s charge extends to historic landscapes as well. “We’re charged with preserving and developing the historic resources of ...

HARWICH — When citizens, businesses and government come together to save key tracts of open space, almost nothing––not even a tornado––can stop the momentum. That was the message from Michael Lach of the Harwich Conservation Trust, who helped cut the ribbon Monday for the new Cornelius Pond Woodlands conservation area. “It takes a village to preserve priority lands,” he said. The 14.9-acre parcel off Queen ...

Trust Seeks CPA Funds For Joint Housing/Open Space Acquisition

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — There is a joint initiative underway between the affordable housing trust and real estate and open space committee to acquire 6.65 acres of property along Deacon’s Folly Road with an eye toward developing affordable housing and preserving open space. The affordable housing trust voted two weeks ago to file an application, together with the real estate and open space committee, with the community pres...

ORLEANS — They're calling it “one of the costliest purchases in the organization's nearly 50-year history,” but the Orleans Conservation Trust is making the case for buying 4.65 acres over three lots on Portaminicut Road in South Orleans. The property “could forge a vital link between existing conservation lands both south and north of the road,” OCT stated in a press release. Donors are being sought to help...

HCT: Keep Your Eyes Open For Turtles

By: Alan Pollock

SOUTH HARWICH — The Harwich Conservation Trust is asking residents to keep an eye open for eastern box turtles and spotted turtles, two declining local species that face a variety of mostly man-made threats. If you find one, officials are asking you to snap a photo and record some information, all of which will be relayed to the state's Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program. The eastern box turt...

CHATHAM – Within the Rolf E. Sylvan Gardens Conservation Area, there are hundreds of plant species, many of them left over from the days when Sylvan operated Lower Cape Nursery on the land. “There's just so much stuff in here,” said Cynthia “DooDee” Nowak, a landscaper who grew up and still lives nearby. “There's stuff programmed to bloom all the way through the fall.” Known for years for its lavish display...

ORLEANS — Town Meeting agreed Monday to spend $47 million on wastewater infrastructure over the next three decades pending a favorable debt exclusion vote at the town election May 21, but rejected spending $1.5 million to acquire a conservation restriction on 18 acres of Sipson Island. “We have the Main Street sewers in the ground,” Paul Davis said from the floor, “on time and under budget. This article toni...

ORLEANS — The mystery buyer-backer helping the Friends of Pleasant Bay preserve Sipson Island isn't a stranger. Rich Nadler and his wife Cheryl have lived year-round in Orleans since 2010. He's visited Sipson as a member of the town's conservation commission. “We had hoped to remain anonymous,” he wrote to The Chronicle last week, “but with the evolving role of the town in funding the conservation restr...

CHATHAM – When Assistant Conservation Agent Paul Wightman needed boxes to hold trail guides for the town's conservation properties, he searched for commercially-made boxes that would fit the bill, but couldn't find any that had two compartments, were rugged enough to withstand the weather and looked good. When the woodworking group of the Chatham-Harwich Newcomers Club inquired if the town had any projects the...

ORLEANS — Supporters of a public-private effort to prevent further development of Pleasant Bay's Sipson Island encountered some headwinds last month as several selectmen offered criticisms. “Why spend a million five to get a conservation restriction on something that probably can't be built on that nobody can get to unless they already live on the bay and have a boat?” Selectman Mark Mathison asked at his boar...