The Delaware Center for the Inland Bays (CIB) is seeking volunteers to assist with two reforestation projects, planting trees at Bullseye-Ferry Landing Preserve (December 20 and 21) and the Perry Tract at Angola Neck Preserve (December 22 and 23), from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. each day.
“Converting these areas from cropland to forests will not only help reduce the nutrient loads into the Inland Bays, but will also create some much-needed habitat for native birds and wildlife,” explains CIB Project Manager, Bob Collins.
High levels of nitrogen and phosphorus can cause excessive algae growth which leads to poor water quality. Now, these once routinely-fertilized areas will be spared the application of nutrients and can even slow and absorb stormwater runoff from other agricultural lands and developed areas. The new trees and shrubs can then utilize the nutrients in the soil, preventing them from reaching the groundwater – and eventually the Inland Bays.
It is estimated that the 22-acre Bullseye-Ferry Landing Preserve project will result in a pollution reduction of 352 pounds of nitrogen and 8.8 pounds of phosphorus annually. The 15-acre Angola Neck Preserve project will result in a reduction of 240 pounds of nitrogen and 6 pounds of phosphorus annually.
Both projects will also provide nesting and foraging habitat for birds and native wildlife, particularly at Bullseye-Ferry Landing Preserve where the plantings will add to surrounding forest and create a larger contiguous forested area. Such natural spaces are particularly important in a watershed that is segmented by roads and development.
Native trees and shrubs will offer shelter and nesting areas for migratory songbirds including the Eastern Towhee, Yellow-breasted Chat, and American Redstart, and will create invaluable habitat for Wild turkey and Bald eagles.
To volunteer, email firstname.lastname@example.org with your preferred volunteer day or call (302) 226-8105 x 109. To learn more about volunteer opportunities with the CIB, visit www.inlandbays.org/volunteer.
Project partners include The Nature Conservancy in Delaware (owner and manager of Bullseye-Ferry Landing Preserve), and DNREC Division of Parks and Recreation (owner and manager of Angola Neck Preserve).
Funding is provided through the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control’s Community Environmental Project Fund, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Nonpoint Source Program grant, and the Delaware Center for the Inland Bays.
The Delaware Center for the Inland Bays is a non-profit organization established in 1994, and is one of 28 National Estuary Programs. With its many partners, the CIB works to preserve, protect and restore Delaware’s Inland Bays–the water that flows into them, and the watershed around them.