Muddy Pond Wilderness Preserve, MA
Things at Muddy Pond Wilderness Preserve have been quieter and more peaceful than ever thanks to our Southern New England Land Steward’s persistent efforts to block illegal motor vehicle trespass on the land, which was once a favorite destination for four-wheelers. Joe Falconeiri continues to be a regular presence at Muddy Pond and keep the footpaths clear and well-marked so that visitors may experience the land’s beauty on foot, at nature’s pace. Joe is now collaborating with local officials to help the bordering state forests cut down on motor vehicle use on the pine barrens next door.
We welcomed school groups back to the Preserve after a Covid-induced hiatus. This year, Sacred Heart High School and Plymouth Harbor Academy were able to take field trips to the land. Plymouth Harbor Academy students gathered native milfoil samples as part of their aquatic species class. Our summer monitoring of the endangered New England boneset, which only remains in a few coastal plain ponds like this one, turned up a whopping 20,000 stems. And, we launched ‘Team Muddy,’ a community of folks who care about the preservation and wildness of Muddy Pond, with a nature walk on the land where participants learned to use iNaturalist to document species. Stay tuned for a winter outing on the land in early March!
NEWT continues to collaborate with Native Land Conservancy (NLC) towards a cultural respect easement and forever-wild easement that NLC will hold on Muddy Pond Wilderness Preserve, as well as to develop a conservation internship for Native youth based out of Muddy Pond.