Volunteers needed Sept. 21 for cleanup at Williams Pond in Seaford as part of Reclaim Our River program

SEAFORD – DNREC, the Nanticoke Watershed Alliance, the City of Seaford, and Friends of the Nanticoke River are seeking volunteers to lend a hand, picking up trash at Williams Pond from 9-11:30 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 21, as part of DNREC’s annual Delaware Coastal Cleanup.

Now in its second year, the Williams Pond cleanup is part of DNREC’s Reclaim Our River (ROR) program, acting as a reminder that the ocean is always downstream. ROR is a partnership between DNREC, the Nanticoke Watershed Alliance, Delaware Nature Society’s Abbott’s Mill Nature Center, Town of Blades, and City of Seaford. The program offers a series of monthly activities that support clean waterways and educate residents on techniques to improve water quality.

Williams Pond empties into the Nanticoke River near Nanticoke Memorial Hospital. Removing trash from the pond and near the park improves water quality, wildlife habitat, and overall health of the ecosystem.

Volunteers can join teams collecting trash from the shoreline and streets. Registered volunteers will receive a free lunch provided by the City of Seaford. The group will meet at Soroptimist Park to sign in and receive supplies, such as gloves and trash bags.

More information can be found at https://nanticokeriver.org/coastalcleanup2019. Questions can be directed to Beth Wasden at 443-944-1175 or bethwasden@nanticokeriver.org

Attendees are encouraged to follow the event at www.facebook.com/NanticokeRiver.

For more information about the 2019 Delaware Coastal Cleanup, which will be held statewide Saturday, Sept. 14, visit https://de.gov/coastalcleanup.

Media contact: Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

Vol. 49, No. 225

Delaware Advisory Council on Wildlife and Freshwater Fish to meet Aug. 27 in Dover

DOVER – Delaware’s Advisory Council on Wildlife and Freshwater Fish will meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 27, in the DNREC Auditorium, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901.

The meeting will include: DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife presentations on Nanticoke River American shad restoration efforts and the associated hatchery; an update on the Delaware Bayshore Initiative to include proposed wildlife viewing enhancements at the Ted Harvey Conservation Area; and the Director’s update including a summary of relevant legislation recently passed by the Delaware General Assembly. For more information, including the meeting agenda, visit the Delaware Public Meeting Calendar at https://publicmeetings.delaware.gov/Meeting/62204.

For more information on Delaware wildlife, please call the DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife’s Wildlife Section at 302-739-9912. For more information on Delaware fisheries, please call the DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife’s Fisheries Section at 302-739-9914.

Follow the Division of Fish & Wildlife on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/DelawareFishWildlife.

Contact: Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

Vol. 49, No. 222

DNREC’s Division of Watershed Stewardship to co-host EcoPaddle Saturday, June 22 in Laurel

BLADES – DNREC’s Division of Watershed Stewardship, in conjunction with the Reclaim Our River (ROR) Nanticoke team, invites the public to participate in the EcoPaddle on Broad Creek. The EcoPaddle will be held from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturday, June 22 at Roger C. Fisher Park, West 6th Street, Laurel, DE 19956. Rain date is Sunday, June 23.

Broad Creek is one of the Nanticoke River’s larger tributaries and boasts a rich natural and cultural history. During the guided morning paddle along a portion of the tidal creek, EcoPaddle participants will discover the flora, fauna, and history of the area and its inhabitants. Afterwards, paddlers can enjoy lunch and learn more about the ROR partnership, and what is being done by the partnership, including the Division of Watershed Stewardship, to improve water quality in the Nanticoke Watershed.

Participants must be at least 8 years of age and all participants under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Participants are encouraged to bring their own kayak or canoe. A limited number of kayaks and canoes are available for use on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Registration fees of $10 help cover the costs of lunch and equipment, including rental kayaks and canoes. Participants can request a refund and cancel their registration up to 72 hours before the paddle. Otherwise, fees are non-refundable. To register, click here.

For more information on the EcoPaddle, please email Beth Wasden at BethWasden@NanticokeRiver.org or call 443-944-1175.

This event is sponsored by the ROR Partnership, including DNREC, Delaware Nature Society, and Nanticoke Watershed Alliance.

The ROR-Nanticoke Series, a program designed to bring more water quality-oriented events, workshops, and recreational opportunities to the Nanticoke River watershed. The ROR program offers information on reducing nutrient and sediment pollution and improving water quality, promotes public access to waterways and provides recreational opportunities as a way to connect residents to their waterways and inspire them to make improvements. For more information on the ROR program, please visit de.gov/nps.

For more information on the Reclaim Our River Partnership, please call Philip Miller at 302-739-9922 or email Philip.Miller@delaware.gov.

Media Contact: Philip Miller, DNREC Division of Watershed Stewardship Conservation Programs Section, 302-739-9922, or Philip.Miller@delaware.gov

Reclaim Our River Eco Paddle and lunch set for June 23 at Laurel River Park

LAUREL – DNREC’s Division of Watershed Stewardship, the National Parks Conservation Association, Delaware Nature Society, Abbotts Mill Nature Center, and Nanticoke Watershed Alliance invite kayakers and canoeists to Roger C. Fisher Laurel River Park for the third annual Eco Paddle from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday, June 23. The event is part of the Reclaim Our River (ROR) Nanticoke Series, a program offering monthly events, workshops, and recreational activities designed to raise water quality awareness in the Nanticoke Watershed.

Experienced paddlers and first-timers alike are welcome to bring the family and learn about wildlife, water quality, and the river’s history while floating on the water and exploring a portion of Broad Creek. After the paddle, lunch will be provided, with ROR partnership exhibits on display. A $5 registration fee (plus a credit card transaction fee) includes food and beverages, along with kayak or canoe rental, if needed. Attendees should dress appropriately for the weather, wear clothes that can get wet, and bring water to stay hydrated while paddling. Space is limited. Register here to reserve a spot in a canoe or kayak.

The Eco Paddle is a family-friendly event, with children welcome. However, all participants younger than 18 years old must have a waiver signed onsite by an adult, and participants younger than 15 years old must be accompanied by an adult. A refund of the registration fee will be offered for cancellations up to 72 hours before the paddle. In the event of severe weather, the otherwise rain-or-shine event will be held Sunday, June 24.

One of the most iconic and scenic rivers in Delaware’s part of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, the Nanticoke River Water Trail spans a 26-mile segment of the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail through Delaware and Maryland. In 1608, Smith explored the river, and named it the Nanticoke after the Native Americans who lived along its banks. Today, the 725,000-acre watershed supports a diverse range of wildlife and more rare plants than any other landscape in the Chesapeake. The event will educate residents on techniques used to improve water quality by reducing nutrient and sediment pollution entering Delaware’s waterways.

The Reclaim Our River Nanticoke Series offers participants fun opportunities to connect with the state’s waterways and provides important information on water quality to help protect aquatic resources. The Reclaim Our River Partnership includes Delaware’s Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, Delaware Nature Society, Nanticoke Watershed Alliance, and National Parks Conservation Association. For more information on the Reclaim Our River Program, visit http://delawarewatersheds.org/.

Vol. 48, No. 164


DNREC invites public to join 2018 ‘Nanticoke Wade In’ and learn of river’s ‘health’ June 9 at Trap Pond State Park

LAUREL – The Nanticoke Watershed Alliance and Delaware’s Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control invite the public to join the 2018 Nanticoke Wade In and learn about the Nanticoke River Ten-Year Report Card, which will be released Saturday, June 9 at Trap Pond State Park in Laurel. Sponsored by DNREC and the Franklin P. and Arthur W. Perdue Foundation, the event takes place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and features free programs for children and adults, exhibitors, and the Wade In’s signature “sneaker index.” Park entry is free by mentioning the “Wade In” at the fee booth.

The highlight will be the Nanticoke River Ten-Year Report Card, which examines water quality results and trends from the first 10 years of the Nanticoke Creekwatchers program. The Nanticoke Watershed Alliance also will provide free native plants and shrubs to program attendees, and Nanticoke Creekwatchers will demonstrate water quality equipment and talk about what they measure in the river and why.

Following the report card announcement in conjunction with DNREC’s Division of Watershed Stewardship, everyone is invited to join the Wade In and get their feet wet to help evaluate the river’s condition using the “sneaker index,” a tradition originated by Maryland State Senator C. Bernard “Bernie” Fowler. Participants will measure how deep they can wade into the water and still see their feet. This is a casual indicator of water clarity – the ability of sunlight to reach the river bottom, which is crucial for supporting high dissolved oxygen levels, bottom-dwelling species, and submerged aquatic vegetation.

Throughout the event, programs will be offered on a variety of topics, including composting, native plants, wildlife, water quality, and pollinators. Among the exhibitors at the event, the Seed Exchange will open at 10 a.m. and will distribute flower, vegetable, and herb seeds while supplies last. Other exhibitors include Sussex County Master Gardeners and the Trap Pond State Park Mobile Science Lab from DNREC’s Division of Parks & Recreation. The day will conclude with a guided kayak tour of Trap Pond.

Attendees are encouraged to follow the event online at www.facebook.com/NanticokeRiver or www.NanticokeRiver.org.

For more information, please contact Phil Miller at 302-290-3578 or philip.miller@delaware.gov.

Contact: Philip Miller, DNREC Conservation Programs, 302-290-3578

Vol. 48, No. 144