The Trustees of Reservations Awarded Grant to Enhance Wildlife Habitat at Charles W. Ward Reservation

Contact Information

Chris Ward
Superintendent
978.682.3580 x1#
cward@ttor.org

Andover/North Andover, MANovember 28th, 2012 – The Trustees of Reservations have been awarded a Landowner Incentives Program (LIP) grant from the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife to convert 15 acres of second-growth woods at Ward Reservation back into early successional habitat, in order to expand rare habitat for dependent plants and animals. Equipment will be onsite as of November 29, and the project should take roughly three weeks to complete.

Known for its sweeping views east and south to the Boston skyline from the Solstice Stones on Holt Hill and the meandering boardwalk through Pine Hole Bog, Ward Reservation is so much more than its individual highlights. Today, the 700-acre Ward Reservation is a post-agricultural landscape dominated by second growth forest, which has emerged from abandoned cropland and pasture. Over 17 miles of stone walls (and 40 acres of fields and old orchards) testify to the property’s agricultural past. Now mostly forested, the property contains two drumlins (Holt Hill and Shrub Hill), a portion of a third (Boston Hill), and various forms of managed grasslands and early successional habitats.

The goal of this project? To expand the area of contiguous grassland habitat at Ward Reservation from 35 acres to 50 acres, and reduce grassland fragmentation. We’ll accomplish this by clearing the woodland currently managed for an “English Woods” feel found in the Tucker West and Taft Woodlots. These woodlots were fields as recently as the 1950s. The conversion of this area, in connection with existing hayfields, will create a mosaic of grassland habitats: all managed to benefit rare and declining grassland-dependent wildlife like the American Kestrel, Eastern Meadowlark, Bobolink, Eastern Bluebird, and various species of butterflies.

In addition to enhancing wildlife habitat, the conversion will open up sweeping views south to the Boston skyline, and allow staff to focus on trail management and battling invasive species.

Check out our website for more details on Ward Reservation and The Trustees.

About The Trustees of Reservations in the Northeast
On the North Shore, The Trustees of Reservations (The Trustees) own and manage some 20 reservations in Essex County including: Agassiz Rock, Appleton Farms and Appleton Grass Rides, Castle Hill, Crane Beach and the Crane Wildlife Refuge, Coolidge Reservation, Crowninshield Island, Greenwood Farm, Halibut Point, Long Hill, Misery Islands, Mount Anne Park, Old Town Hill, Pine and Hemlock Knoll, Ravenswood Park, Stavros Reservation, Stevens-Coolidge Place, Ward Reservation, and Weir Hill. Encompassing 5,794 acres, these properties contain some of the most spectacular natural, historic and cultural resources in Massachusetts and offer woodlands and hilltops, coastlines, great estates, historic houses and gardens as well as programs such as outdoor concerts, farm days, summer camps and plant sales throughout the region. To find out more about The Trustees in the Northeast, please call 978.921.1944

About The Trustees of Reservations Statewide
The Trustees are 100,000 people like you, from every corner of Massachusetts, who share a deep set of similar values – a love of the land, the outdoors, and the distinctive charms of New England—as well as a shared vision of celebrating and protecting these special places for everyone, forever.

Founded in 1891 by Charles Eliot, an open space visionary and protégé of the famous landscape architect Frederick Law Olmstead, The Trustees of Reservations are the nation's oldest statewide land conservation trust and nonprofit conservation organization. With 107 reservations, comprising nearly 25,000 acres – all open to the public – Trustees properties are tremendously diverse. From mountains, open meadows and parks, to working farms, stately homes and gardens, 70 miles of stunning coastline, and five National Historic landmarks, Trustees reservations offer something for everyone.

The Trustees also hold perpetual conservation restrictions on more than 16,000 acres—a total larger than any other conservation organization in Massachusetts—permanently protecting scenic and natural areas from development, and have worked with communities and other conservation partners to assist in the protection of another 16,000+ acres around the state.

The Trustees’ volunteers, members, donors, staff, and governing board all “hold in trust,” and care for nearly 100 places of cultural, natural, and historical significance, called "reservations."

Statewide, The Trustees employ 165 full-time, 46 regular part-time, and 350-400 seasonal staff with expertise in ecology, education, historic resources, land protection, conservation, land management, and planning. To apply for employment opportunities, request a speaker for an event, become an organizational partner, and/or interview Trustees’ experts on important topics and issues, please contact www.thetrustees.org