Nature Walk in Mine Falls Park
Saturday, May 13, 2017, from 9:00 to 11:30 p.m., at Mine Falls Park, off Whipple Street, Nashua, NH
Spring is a wonderful time to get outdoors, to take in some fresh air, and to see what’s new. The NRWA invites the public to join naturalist Bruce Lund for a walk in the 325-acre Mine Falls Park – Nashua’s natural “Crown Jewel” park. This being the height of spring, we’ll look for spring wildflowers and nesting birds as we walk easy foot trails around an oxbow lake and its marshes, along the man-dug Nashua Power Canal, and over forested paths on the bank of the Nashua River. Mark Archambault from the NRWA, an avid birder, will be joining Bruce to co-lead this walk.
Regular walking footwear is all that’s needed – binoculars and cameras are welcome. Park and meet in the parking lot on Whipple Street in Nashua, NH. The parking lot is on the opposite side of the street from the UPS facility (whose address is 3 Whipple Street). View Google map and directions.
Birds of the Nashua River
Tuesday, May 9, 2017, from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m., at Thayer Memorial Library, 717 Main Street in Lancaster, MA
The Nashua River and its tributaries are part of the vital habitat for a wide variety of species of birds. Join NRWA's Mark Archambault for this free presentation on the birds who make their homes along our rivers and streams, as well as those whose migration path is influenced by our waterways and surrounding habitat. Mark will cover water birds as well as woodland and field birds. Learn about the Great Blue Heron, Spotted Sandpiper, Belted Kingfisher, Baltimore Oriole, and Yellow Warbler, to name a few. Mark will discuss their behaviors and habitat, and the importance of clean water and protected woodlands for their survival. Learn tips on identifying these birds by sight and sound when out paddling or walking.
Spring Birding Walk
Sunday, May 7, 2017 from 8:00 to 10:30 a.m. in Groton, MA
Protecting Townsend's Waterways
Thursday, May 4, 2017 from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. at the Townsend Public Library, 12 Dudley Road, Townsend, MA
Local Earth Day 2017 Clean-ups
Earth Day is Saturday, April 22nd! Are you looking for a volunteer opportunity to help out with a local clean-up? Here are a few that we are aware of:
Groton Grange Annual Town Wide Litter Clean Up and Bike Drive
Saturday, April 22, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and Sunday April 23, from Noon to 4:00 p.m.
Celebrate Earth Day with your friends and neighbors at Groton Grange #7 during our Annual Town Wide Litter Clean Up. Meet at Prescott School, Main Street in Groton, MA for gloves, trash bags, and choose a street to clean. Return bags to dumpsters located at Prescott School parking lot. On Saturday from 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM, Bikes not Bombs (BNB) will be accepting your old, unwanted bikes to be repurposed, recycled, and kept out of the trash stream. BNB ships bikes overseas to economic development projects through International Programs in Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean. https://bikesnotbombs.org/bike-drive/1358 The Bike Drive is Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. ONLY! Call if you would like someone to pick up your bike! Information will be available from Friends of the Tree Warden's Arbor Day celebration. Refreshments available. For more information: George 978-448-3715 or Brad 978-448-3418
2nd Annual Harvard Town-wide Trash Cleanup
Thursday, April 27 thru Sunday, April 30, 2017 in Harvard, MA
Nashua River Rail Trail Clean-up for Park Serve Day
Saturday, April 29, 2017 from 9:00 a.m. to noon on the Nashua River Rail Trail
Ayer Town-wide Clean-up
Saturday, April 29 and Sunday, April 30 from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Natural History of Timber Rattlesnakes in the Adirondacks (and the Northeast) with William S. Brown
Wednesday, May 3, 2017 from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. at the NRWA River Resource Center at 592 Main Street (Rt. 119) in Groton, MA
William S. Brown has been studying the Timber Rattlesnake population in the Adirondacks for nearly 40 years. His study of the life history and ecology of these snakes is the longest running continuous capture-recapture study of any rattlesnake conducted in the wild. Learn about the life history of the Timber Rattlesnake, its behaviors and habitat. Professor Brown will share information on these snakes that has come to light thru his study. For example, these snakes are long-lived (over 40 years), and females generally don’t reproduce until age 9 or 10. He’ll discuss winter rattlesnake denning, essential to their survival. Did you know that winter dens in New York represent ancestral populations which have been in continuous existence for approximately 8,000 years? Brown will also cover how to live with these shy and retiring snakes, and efforts to preserve native Timber Rattlesnake populations.
Brown is an Associate Professor Emeritus of Biology at Skidmore College and lecturer in the Dept of Biological Sciences at the University at Albany (SUNY). His work has been published in National Geographic and peer-reviewed scientific journals. Currently, he is an editor and author for a national group of research biologists producing a "Conservation Action Plan" for the Timber Rattlesnake, and serves on the Timber Rattlesnake Recovery Team of the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation. Professor Brown was a recipient of The Nature Conservancy's (Eastern New York Chapter) annual Oak Leaf Award in 2003 citing his "many years of study and efforts toward preservation of Timber Rattlesnakes." He is a zoologist and herpetologist with Bachelor's and Master's degrees from Arizona State University and a Ph.D. degree in Biology from the University of Utah.
Park Serve Day: Nashua River Rail Trail
Saturday, April 29, 2017 from 9:00 a.m. to noon on the Nashua River Rail Trail
"Wild and Scenic" Nashua Rivers Study Committee: Update and Input Session
Thursday, April 27, 2017 from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. at the NRWA River Resource Center, 592 Main Street (Rt. 119) in Groton, MA
Have you always thought that our rivers are among the most scenic in New England? Are you impressed by the diversity of plants and animals found along our rivers? Join the Nashua River “Wild and Scenic River” Study Committee on Thursday April 27th from 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. at the Nashua River Watershed Association’s River Resource Center, 592 Main Street, Groton, MA. There will be a general public information sharing and opportunity for input.
The Study Committee was formed after the U.S. Congress passed legislation authorizing the National Park Service to commence a study of sections of the Nashua, Squannacook, and Nissitissit Rivers to determine if they are eligible and suitable for designation as part of the federal Wild and Scenic Partnership River Program. For more information, please see the newly–created Study Committee website: www.WildandScenicNashuaRivers.org
The Study is expected to be about a three year process and is voluntarily undertaken by the towns of Ayer, Dunstable, Groton, Harvard, Lancaster, Pepperell, Shirley, and Townsend. The locally-appointed Study Committee is currently reviewing our rivers’ cultural history, outstanding biological and ecological resources, and extensive recreational opportunities.
Committee members are combing through any and all pertinent local, regional, state and federal records, reports, historical documents, and related data to clarify which resources are considered “outstanding and remarkable”. At the April 27th event, findings to date will be reported, and the views of attendees will be solicited.
A Study Report will be prepared on the Committee’s findings and a locally-developed Management Plan will be drafted with extensive community input. That Management Plan will be used to guide future ecological, recreational, historical and cultural protection efforts. Towards the end of the study process, town boards will deliberate on the Management Plan and its non-binding recommendations, and, ultimately each town will vote – at its Town Meeting – on whether it recommends that ”Wild and Scenic” designation be pursued. It is expected that these votes will take place in the spring of 2018.
The April 27th event is an opportunity for any interested area resident to learn more about the Study, to give input, and to talk with Committee members. The Nashua River Watershed Association is playing a lead role along with the National Park Service. The towns have each appointed a Representative to the Committee, and the Committee also includes representatives from the US Fish & Wildlife Service, the MA Department of Fish & Game, the MA Division of Ecological Restoration, USGS, and volunteers.
NRWA FSU Grad/PDP Course for Teachers Grades 5 thru 8
Monday, July 10 thru Friday, July 14, 2017 from 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the NRWA River Resource Center, 592 Main Street (Rt. 119) in Groton, MA
The Nashua River Watershed Association will lead a course for teachers this summer through Fitchburg State University. “NRWA Watershed Investigations Course: Connecting Watersheds and 2016 MA Science & Technology/ Engineering Standards” will allow graduate level and/or in-service teachers grades 5-8 to dissect and apply the new Massachusetts Science and Technology/Engineering Draft Revised Standards. This course, offered through Fitchburg State University/Summer II 2017, will run from July 10 through July 14, 2017, 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., based at the NRWA’s River Resource Center located at 592 Main Street (Rt. 119) in Groton, MA.
Candidates will practice using the publication Nashua River Watershed Investigations for Grades 5-8: Connecting Watersheds to the 2016 MA Science and Technology/Engineering Standards, including 12 lessons ready for classroom use. They will learn through hands-on outdoor science lessons, presentations from NRWA scientists, and collaboration with peers. Candidates will also design a science unit including a self-designed research project with measurable data collection. Outdoor excursions will include a short canoe trip, walks through several forested areas, and explorations in a schoolyard.
Summer Eco-adventures for Youth for Ages 6 to 14
Get ready for summer! Registration is open for Nashua River Watershed Association’s popular Summer Eco-adventure programs. Your children will enjoy days of fun science, outdoor adventure, and making new friends. These small group programs are each led by NRWA professional educators/naturalists. Sign up soon; space is limited.
Wilderness Summer Survival Week for Ages 11- 14
June 26 – June 29,2017 (Mon -Thu) 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Challenge yourself in nature with four adventurous, action-packed days of hiking Groton trails through numerous conservation properties, paddling the Squannacook River, developing summer survival skills, and exploring the inner world of our local river, woodlands and fields while making new friends. Outdoor adventure at its best with River Classroom Director Stacey Chilcoat. Program fees are $200 for NRWA members or $230 for non-members.
Wild World of Water Week for Ages 6-8
July 17– July 20,2017 (Mon - Thu) 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Escape the heat of summer with a fun-filled four days all about water! Collect aquatic critters from the Nashua River, make a fresh water aquarium, do water experiments, make mini-boats to race on mini streams, and stay cool each day with lots of water games. Perfect for nature & water loving kids! Program fees are $180 for NRWA members or $210 for non-members.
Animal Adventures: Discover the creatures that share our forests, fields and wetlands
July 24 – July 27, 2017 (Mon – Thu) 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Calling all animal lovers and nature explorers! From reptiles to mammals, this program focuses on the amazing lives of our local wildlife. Collect fascinating insects, practice summer tracking skills, hike local trails and play animal camouflage games. Discover how our local wildlife has adapted to live and thrive in these three distinct habitants. Program fees are $190 for NRWA members or $220 for non-members
Wee Play: Nature Detectives for Ages 6-7
Joint program with Nashoba Paddler’s Wee Paddle 3-day Camp
Tuesday, August 1 & Thursday, August 3, 2017, 9:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
The NRWA is offering two land-based outdoor adventure days for children participating in Nashoba Paddler’s Wee Paddle 3-day camp which runs Monday, Wednesday and Friday during this same week. Children will explore woods and fields, collect aquatic insects, play eco-games, and learn about the local wildlife. These two days are open to all families but will expand the outdoor fun for Nashoba Paddler Wee Paddle Campers interested in a full week of adventure! Program fees are $75 for NRWA members or $90 for non-members.