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Explore vernal pools and bird-watch with the Canton Land Conservation Trust

Eastern Towhee, courtesy Audubon Society

Submitted Release 

The Canton Land Conservation Trust invites the public to two April hikes:

  • A vernal pool hike Sun April 23 begins at 1:30 p.m. at the Uplands Preserve, led by Land Trust Director Sarah Faulkner.

Hikers will see as many as three vernal pools and learn about life in and around these special habitats. Weather willing, they will see water in the vernal pools and egg masses left by breeding amphibians, most likely wood frogs and spotted salamanders. Depending on their level of development, hikers may be able to catch tadpoles and identify them.

This is an easy, fairly short hike – about 1.5 miles with slight climbing. It is well-suited to families but parents should be prepared to monitor children so they don’t fall into the pools. The total time will be under two hours.

Directions: from Rt. 179 turn onto High Valley Drive and follow for approximately 1 mile to Westwoods Drive on the right. Turn onto Westwoods Drive, follow to the end and park in the cul-de-sac.

  • A bird walk Sun. April 30 begins at 7:30 a.m. at the Trust’s Sun, Wind and Woodland Preserve, led by Land Trust Co-President and Roaring Brook Nature Center Director Jay Kaplan.

… Continue Reading

Maple Sugaring 101 Set for Later this Month

January 2, 2017 Community, Environment No Comments

Submitted Material 
 
CANTON — Later this month Rob Lamothe of Lamothe’s Sugar House will visit Roaring Brook Nature Center to present Maple Sugaring 101, a hands-on program designed to help local residents who hope to make their own maple syrup.
 
The program, set to take place at Roaring Brook Nature Center, will include information on tree identification, necessary equipment, how to tap as well as “sugaring” anecdotes gleaned from years of making maple syrup in Burlington, CT. The program will take place at Roaring Brook Nature Center, 70 Gracey Road, in Canton and is $3 for members and $6 for nonmembers. See more at http://roaringbrook.org or call 860-693-0263.

Hartford Audubon Society Announces Birdwatching Challenge

January 2, 2017 Community, Environment No Comments

Submitted material 

The Hartford Audubon Society (HAS) has announced its Hartford Big January of Birding birdwatching challenge.  The purpose of the activity is to encourage folks to get outside during the month of January and see as many species of wild birds as possible!  The competition is free to people of all ages.  Different challenge categories are provided for age groups and school groups.

 “Birdwatching is a delightful, free activity that can be enjoyed by people of all ages, in any setting.  Birds can be seen anywhere – you can watch pigeons, peregrine falcons and snowy owls in Hartford; count the birds on your feeders from your windows; identify ducks and geese on a local river; or seek rare woodland birds on land trust reserves.  Anywhere you go, birding is just plain fun” said HAS Board member and Canton resident, Sarah Faulkner.  “We’re also offering a special challenge for school classes” she added.  “We would especially like teachers to help their students be keen observers of our January birds, and will offer awards to classes that submit collective bird sightings.”   … Continue Reading

For Collinsville Poet, New England Trail is About Confluence of Nature and Culture

David K. Leff

David K. Leff

Kickoff for David K. Leff’s Poet in Residency is Tuesday

By John Fitts 

Writers have always turned to nature for inspiration and Collinsville’s David K. Leff is no stranger to this phenomenon.

Now, however, Leff has an opportunity to meld the written – and spoken – word and nature together in unique ways as Poet in Residence of the 215-mile New England Scenic Trail.

In fact, it is believed he is the first poet to serve as an artist in residence for a national scenic trail, in this case, a foot journey that runs from Guilford to the New Hampshire border of Massachusetts.

“I’m really honored; I’m humbled,” said Leff, an author, poet, Canton Town Historian and former official with the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. “I’m really excited because I think there’s so much potential to enhance and enliven people’s experience of the outdoors with poetry that’s accessible.”

A formal kickoff for Leff’s residency will be held from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2016 at the Connecticut Forest and Park Association Headquarters, 16 Meriden Road in Middlefield, CT

In addition to poetry from Leff, attendees will enjoy words from CT Poet Laureate Rennie McQuilkin of Simsbury, as well as a narrated slide show of the New England Trail.   … Continue Reading

Canton Land Trust Christmas Tree Sale Returns Dec. 3

November 27, 2016 Community, Environment No Comments

stfarmseedlingSubmitted Release 

 A Canton holiday tradition returns on Sat. Dec. 3.  The Canton Land Conservation Trust will hold its Christmas Tree and Greens Sale from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Smith Christmas Tree Farm on Doyle Road.

There are 60-some great-looking spruce and fir trees. Trees will start as low as $25, and bundles of pine greens will be $5. There will be cookies and hot chocolate to whet your tree hunting appetites, and folks available to help you cut your tree and hoist it onto the roof of your car. Remember to bring rope to assist with tying.

This event creates fond family memories of tromping through the fields (and sometimes snow) searching for the perfect tree. The Land Trust encourages all to stay and hike the property. … Continue Reading

David K. Leff Tabbed as First National Scenic Trail ‘Poet in Residence’

David K. Leff

David K. Leff

Submitted Release

MIDDLEFIELD – There are only 11 National Scenic Trails in the U.S. and two of them run through Connecticut – the Appalachian Trail and the nation’s newest national scenic trail, the New England Trail (NET).

Special places like the NET have long offered inspiration for painters and photographers who capture their physical beauty, but never before has a National Scenic Trail recognized a poet to serve as its “artist in residence.” Poet and author David K. Leff of Collinsville will serve as NET Poet in Residence for one year beginning October 15th. Leff was selected due to his extensive experience as a hiker, natural resource conservationist, and nature poet. The previous two artists in residence for the NET were photographers Barbara Bosworth and Xio Xiomaro who displayed their visual art in local galleries along the NET. … Continue Reading

Letter to the Editor: What are the alternative sites to the Farmington River for Canton’s New Highway garage?

To the Editor:
We know you are in favor of a new garage. We all are. But if we’re not going to build on the river, where should we build it?  Everyone wants to know what – exactly – are the other possible sites?Not On Our River does not have a list of other sites, nor should we – that is the job of the Permanent Municipal Building Committee (PMBC), as established by the Board of Selectmen. Their responsibility is to look at these kinds of needs and make recommendations. The mission of Not On Our River is simply to remove the garage from the river. Members of the PAC Not on Our River are not building or siting experts and neither is the Board of Selectmen. The PMBC members, who have successfully managed many Canton projects, are the building experts. … Continue Reading

Letter to the Editor: It Doesn’t Make Sense to Rebuild Garage at Current Location

To The Editor

There is no doubt that the Town of Canton is in desperate need of a new town garage. The question is where should it be located?

It just does not make sense to rebuild it at its current location. A new building residing at 1 foot above the 100 year flood stage is not an economically prudent or a safe choice. This flood stage calculation doesn’t even take into account the devastation that could occur in the event of an upstream dam breach. … Continue Reading

Letter to the Editor: Rebuild the Garage Where it Is But With More Environmental Safeguards

To the Editor:

I join a number of my fellow residents of Canton in urging you to consider the recent, thoughtful proposal brought forth by the Board of Selectmen which calls for the rebuilding the Town Garage at its current site.

In looking through the proposal, you will see that the costs and complexity of the project have been reduced by more than 20% from previous proposals.

In my opinion, nice but noncritical components have been eliminated. And, there is no cost associated with procuring another site. … Continue Reading

Canton Land Trust Participates in New England Cottontail Initiative, Plans Educational Hike

October 5, 2016 Community, Environment 1 Comment
This sign will be posted at the cut area.

This sign will be posted at the cut area.

By John Fitts

CANTON – With rabbits sighting so common in the area one might question the need to improve habit.

Conservationists, however, will be quick to tell you that those cute little bunnies you see are almost certainly eastern cottontail, a species introduced from the midwest in the nineteenth century, primarily for hunting.

The native New England Cottontail, however, is much more rarely seen and Jay Kaplan, co-president of the Canton Land Conservation Trust, does not believe there is a population in town.

With that in mind, the trust is getting ready to clear a little more than 10 acres in its Sun, Wind and Woodland Preserve off Breezy Hill Road as part of The New England Cottontail Conservation Initiative, a federally supported, multi-state initiative to provide habitat for the species. … Continue Reading

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