April 28, 2017

Opportunities abound for those who enjoy nature

The Presumpscot Regional Land Trust has three volunteer opportunities for those who are interested in working on spring trail clean ups, monitoring water quality, and counting migratory fish, can do so by contacting the land trust at: www.prlt.org/get-involved/.

For the Spring Trail Volunteer Project, there are many tasks, small and large, and every hour helps. From moving leaves and sticks off the trail to carrying lumber and shifting large rocks to designing switchbacks, there’s a task for everyone.

Spring Trail Clean-up Dates:
Gambo Preserve, Gorham - Saturday, May 13
Hawkes Preserve, Gorham - Saturday, May 13
Frog Hollow Preserve, Gorham - Friday, May 19
Mill Brook Preserve, Westbrook - Sunday, May 21
Black Brook Preserve, Windham - Saturday June 10
Cummings Preserve, Gorham - Saturday, June 10
Little River Preserve, Gorham - Saturday, June 17
Pringle Wildlife Preserve, Windham - Saturday, June 24

All clean-ups happen from 9 a.m. to noon.

If water quality is your passion, join the Presumpscot Regional Land Trust to volunteer to collect water samples to help us keep the waters in our region clean. Your efforts will build on over 20 years of work by the Presumpscot River Watch (now a program of the land trust), collecting data on dissolved oxygen and bacteria throughout the Presumpscot River Watershed. These are all key indicators of the health of aquatic ecosystems for both animals and humans. The sampling season begins with a training led by the Maine Department of Environmental Protection on Saturday, May 6th at the University of Southern Maine, Gorham campus.

There are then 10 sampling days, every other Saturday, starting in late May. Each sampling day will generally go from 7:30 a.m. to 10:30 am. The trust asks that volunteers be available for at least half of the sampling days on the following Saturdays:

http://www.pongratzlaw.com/May 20, June 3, June 17, July 1, July 15, July 29, August 12, Augusta 26, September 9 and September 23. 

For those who want to be involved with counting of migratory fish, The Presumpscot Regional Land
Trust is a partner with the University of Southern Maine Environmental Science and Policy Department that provides critical data to estimating the alewife population in Casco Bay.

Alewife lives in the ocean and spawns in freshwater systems and they are important to the Gulf of Maine ecosystem. In spring, they make their way from the ocean into the Presumpscot River and Mill Brook so they can reproduce in Highland Lake before returning to the sea. This is the largest and most productive alewife run in Casco Bay.

Volunteers will count fish at the Highland/Mill Brook Dam as they migrate upstream, which is typically May to early June. It is a simple and exciting way to volunteer while offering a backstage pass to an exciting natural phenomenon. No experience is needed and a short training session will be provided. The time commitment is also short, as count slots are just 30 minutes long.

If you have questions or would like more information, please contact Stewardship and Outreach Coordinator, Toby Jacobs at: toby@prlt.org or at: 839-4633.

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