It Waits for No Man

This post is the third in a series contributed by DRA Trustee Barnaby Porter. Here are links to the first two: Babe in the Woods – June 6, 2018 Can Palm Trees Do That? – March 9, 2018 Down on the mudflats at low water, I am prone to contemplate the hugeness of the tide. The muck sucking at my boots squishes and squirms, acre upon acre of it, the primordial soup, loading the air to saturation with the black, organic smells of trillions of little lives beginning and ending in each moment. I am actually standing on the bottom

In appreciation for all you do

video thumbnail - boy looking at horseshoe crabs

We couldn’t have done it without you! By way of a thank you to DRA members and supporters, we’ve put together a little slideshow with highlights of the work you’ve made possible during the past year. You’ll see wonderful things happening with land conservation, stewardship, education, marine conservation and water quality, and our partner Twin Villages Foodbank Farm. Enjoy!  

Babe in the Woods

This post is the second in a series contributed by DRA Trustee Barnaby Porter. Read the first post here. A lushness has settled on this river valley, a lushness of filled-out leaves and promising buds, of violets and bluets, and iris wedging forth from the deceptive flatness of their fog-green leaves. Nestsful of three and four eggs incubate under the fluffed breasts of sitting birds, poised under eaves, in thickets and secreted in the hollows of decaying trees. Blackflies and mosquitoes, succulent and swarming, emerge from the black, sphagnum pools of the brook in the woods, and, wherever I look

DRA takes part in Maine Phytoplankton Monitoring Program

volunteers look into a microscope

DRA is now part of the Maine Phytoplankton Monitoring Program, which serves as a first alert system for the Maine Department of Marine Resources (DMR) Shellfish Sanitation Program. The object of the program is to monitor water samples for target species that have the potential to cause harmful algal blooms. The monitoring program relies on DMR staff and a network of trained volunteers to take water samples and analyze them for the presence of certain species of phytoplankton which create toxins as a by-product of their metabolism. If these phytoplankton are present in the estuary, there is a chance they

DRA and Wawenock Golf Club partner in natural pest control project

bird box volunteers in front of wawenock golf club house

Wawenock Golf Club in Walpole and DRA recently collaborated on a project to control insect pests at the golf course using biological instead of chemical means. On a sunny and brisk April morning, a crew of around twenty DRA and Wawenock volunteers, including students from Lincoln Academy’s IDEAL program, installed 18 bluebird boxes in open areas around the greens. The boxes are designed to appeal to both Eastern Bluebirds, a member of the thrush family that eats grubs and insects on the ground, and Tree Swallows, which feed on flying insects. The golf club uses careful integrated pest management practices

Can palm trees do that?

Sea smoke and frosty trees on the river

This “partial letter to friends in Florida” is taken from Barnaby Porter’s book, Twelve Miles from the Rest of the World. Let me tell you about yesterday morning. I went down to the shore as usual to check on things. It was still . . . whisper still. All the trees, most impressively the tall pines, were trimmed in pink and white hoarfrost, and the sun, which is a little higher these days, was beaming down through them with the bright promise of spring sometime in the not too distant future. The river was royal blue with frozen trimming. Every

Construction at DRA’s Round Top Farmhouse kicks off mid-March

The historic farmhouse at DRA’s Round Top Farms in Damariscotta will be undergoing renovations this year, with work scheduled to begin in mid-March. Damariscotta River Association (DRA) plans to relocate its administrative headquarters to the farmhouse when work is complete this fall. Preserving a piece of local history DRA inherited the property from Round Top Center for the Arts when that organization dissolved in 2008, according to a safe fallback arrangement made by former owner Nancy Freeman. Though maintenance of the buildings at Round Top Farms had long been deferred, DRA recognized the particular value of the farmhouse to the

Twin Villages Foodbank Farm continues to grow

students planting seedlings at the farm

After two full growing seasons, Twin Villages Foodbank Farm (TVFF) in Damariscotta is ready to expand its capacity to grow and deliver fresh food to food pantries and other programs in Lincoln County. TVFF partners with DRA, using organic growing practices on two acres of land located at DRA’s Great Salt Bay Farm. Last year, with support from the community and help from hundreds of student volunteers, the farm grew and delivered nutrient-rich vegetables to food pantries in Newcastle, Boothbay, Wiscasset, Jefferson, Waldoboro and Whitefield, as well as Newcastle Head Start and Wiscasset High School. This year, TVFF plans to

Snow just in time for Winter Fest

ice skating at the community ice rink

Though the weather was unseasonably warm and the ground bare two days earlier, a cold front and a few inches of snow arrived in time to provide just the right conditions for Winter Fest on February 18! DRA partnered with Great Salt Bay School’s PTO to host the festival, celebrating the best of winter with outdoor fun. The ice rink was open for skating, a campfire burned nearby for toasting marshmallows, and Education Director Sarah Gladu was on hand with her sled dogs to offer rides on the dogsled. Many kids and adults took advantage of the fresh snow for

DRA and PWA Explore Opportunities for Collaboration

DRA-PWA study group

A Joint Statement to Our Members Our volunteers, members, and supporters are the true caretakers of the lands and waters of the Damariscotta River and Pemaquid River watersheds. You help to educate tomorrow’s river keepers. You make it possible to conserve treasured forests, farms, and islands. You enable the creation and maintenance of dozens of miles of trails and you play a vital role in keeping our waterways clean and healthy. Thank you! We are so grateful for all you do for the well-being of our local lands, waters, and communities and know you share in our deep connection to