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Eastern Shore Land Conservancy is committed to preserving and sustaining the vibrant communities of the Eastern Shore and the lands and waters that connect them.

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Cornell Grant Partners Two Conservation-Based Non-Profits on MD Eastern Shore

Lowers Shore Land Trust and Eastern Shore Land Conservancy Embark on Bird Conservation Project with Help of Grant from Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Easton, Maryland – Eastern Shore Land Conservancy (ESLC) will be collaborating with Lower Shore Land Trust (LSLT) on an initiative through the Cornell Lab of Ornithology (Cornell Lab)’s Land Trust Bird Conservation Initiative Small Grant Program. The $5,000 award will be utilized to develop a six part bird conservation series to be held from January to August of 2022 that will highlight various bird conservation and restoration practices across the Delmarva Peninsula; the series will also promote opportunities for engaging new and existing volunteers in meaningful stewardship of conservation lands through the lens of bird conservation.

The Delmarva Peninsula hosts a variety of critical ecosystem habitat and supports a plethora of habitats from forest interior, grasslands, wetlands, and saltmarsh habitat. However, the peninsula is a vulnerable area, with the Chesapeake Bay to the west and Coastal Bays and the Atlantic Ocean to the east; habitat loss from sea level rise and development, along with large-scale changes in farming practices have contributed to the declines in a variety of bird species once plentiful on the coastal landscape, such as saltmarsh sparrow, seaside sparrow, black rail, and bobwhite quail.

This upcoming conservation series will highlight regional restoration efforts being implemented by conservation partners through discussions of restoration practices and trainings geared toward land trust members and volunteers, as well as interested members of our community. Through these focused programs, which include bird banding demonstrations and birding walks, partners aim to increase awareness of the challenges to bird populations and of the actions being implemented to counter these declines.

Existing conservation easement landowners will gain insight and knowledge as to how their land plays a role in the larger picture of restoration efforts, and whether their property might have potential to be enrolled in the highlighted restoration projects. Individuals of our communities can become more involved with local land trusts and will have the opportunity to learn how to become more involved with our conserved lands.

ESLC and LSLT sincerely appreciate Cornell Lab for this opportunity to work with local conservation groups and for the ability to increase our community support of bird conservation. For questions about this upcoming series, please contact ESLC’s Restoration Specialist, Larisa Prezioso, at lprezioso@eslc.org or LSLT’s Executive director, Kate Patton, kpatton@lowershorelandtrust.org

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