Delaware timber harvests achieved a 93 percent rate of compliance with best management practices (BMPs) designed to protect water quality and limit soil erosion, according to a new report. Dr. Anne Hairston-Strang, a forest hydrologist with the Maryland DNR Forest Service, assessed the use and effectiveness of BMPs by surveying a total of 72 sites in Maryland and Delaware from 2014 to 2016. Selected sites were locations with waterway crossings and buffers with the greatest potential for water quality impacts. Effects were expected to be larger than normal because high rainfall during the 2014-2016 period represented an increase of 20 percent above the 30-year average.
Final data indicated that the average sediment delivery across all locations was less than one cubic foot per site—indicating that proper use of BMPs was successful at protecting water quality during harvest operations.
DNREC, Chesapeake Conservancy, U.S. Navy partner to acquire property for Sussex County’s Nanticoke Wildlife Area
The state has addedd 48 acres of pristine woodlands along a tributary of the Nanticoke River in Sussex County to the Nanticoke Wildlife Area. The property features increasingly rare stands of Atlantic white cedar trees and an abundance of native wildlife, including some species of conservation concern.
The Delaware Forest Service’s Urban and Community Forestry Program is awarding over $47,000 in competitive grants to fund 14 community-based tree projects in all three Delaware counties. This year, more than half of the successful projects – a total of $29,429.35 – addressed tree management issues such as the removal of hazardous trees. Overall, 11 projects were funded in New Castle County, one in Kent County, and two in Sussex County.
In partnership with DNREC’s Division of Watershed Stewardship’s rain barrels program, the Delaware Forest Service is inviting residents of Delaware communities within the Chesapeake Bay Watershed to “buy a rain barrel … get a free tree” through the Forest Service’s new “Trees for the Bay” program.