You’ll be excited to know that Waldo County Soil and Water Conservation District (WCSW) is gearing up for a whole new level of programming and services. This year, we have added a second staff position, with Aleta McKeage joining us as the new Technical Director. We are offering many new services, which you can find out more about on this website (also new!). We are now providing educational workshops on demand in several topic areas, including ecology, mapping and management of invasive plants, and healthy conservation practices for your property. Look for our workshop series on woodland management beginning this season. We have begun a Conservation Assistance Program (CAP) for land owners, which includes an option to certify your property as Conservation Lands or an Eco Landscape. Participating in our Conservation Assistance Program also includes an option to become a WCSW Cooperator.
Our Community Conservation Corps provides an opportunity for young people interested in working in land management, farming, conservation or forestry a chance to help move many worthwhile local projects forward while gaining valuable skills and exploring careers. The Corps members work as interns with the Waldo County Soil and Water Conservation District and the NRCS for 6-10 weeks each summer.
Our 2017 interns Jamie and Sierra have been busy assisting with the development of a new community center green space in Belfast, the Crosby Center. They have assisted Coastal Mountains Land Trust develop a plan for mapping and management of invasive plants in the new McLelland-Poor Preserve. They’ve also learned about assessing freshwater stream water quality with biologist John Tipping while carrying out sensitive areas monitoring on Sears Island.
Another recent activity included helping Belfast High School science students learn how to sample vegetation in study plots in a mowed field. They will also accompany NRCS soil scientists to an area dairy farm to learn how NRCS helps farmers. All in all, they are making a great contribution to conservation while learning about a wide range conservation efforts in Waldo County.