Sent: Saturday, May 21, 2005 3:24 PM
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Subject: Newton Conservators Nature Notes - May 21, 2005

Newton Conservators Nature NotesSaturday, May 20, 2005

This email newsletter provides information on upcoming nature and environmental related events, exhibits, and information in and around the Newton, Massachusetts area.  The newsletter is sponsored by the Newton Conservators, the local open space organization in Newton and it also serves as the organization’s means of sending out time sensitive information.  Please visit our website at  Welcome to the many new readers of this free email newsletter.  If you wish to be removed from this email list, simply reply with "remove" in the message or subject.  (Note: email addresses mentioned in this newsletter substitute (AT) for @ to foil spammers).  In This Issue Some of the topics covered in this newsletter are the following:

·         Annual Meeting of the Newton Conservators – Roger Swain Speaks·        Newton Conservators Spring Walk Series (Upcoming)

o        Sunday, May 22, Cutler Park Bird Walk o        Sunday, May 29, Newton/Wellesley/Needham Aqueduct Bike Ride o        Sunday, June 5, Lake Area Canoe Trip on the Charles River o        Sunday, June 12, Nature and Photo Workshop along the Charles River o        Saturday, June 18, 2005, Charles River Pathway Bike Ride

·         The Newton (not just a) Plant Sale – Saturday May 21 and Sunday May 22·         23rd Annual Newton House Tour – Sunday May 22, Noon – 5 pm·         Newton's State of the Environment – Monday, May 23, 7 pm at the Library    ·         The June Environmental Show - The Charles River – Newton’s Great Waterway·         Angino Farm CPA Update·         76 Webster Park CPA Update·         Environmental Science Program – Summer 2005·         Free Fishing Days – June 4-5·         Turkey Tallies and Goose Locations Needed ·         Young Wildlife Belongs in the Wild  ·         Walking Trails in Newton’s Parks and Recreation Lands·         About Newton Conservators Nature Notes·         About the Newton Conservators

 Annual Meeting of the Newton Conservators

Roger Swain to Speak on “Community Farming”
Wednesday, June 1, 2005, 6:15 pmRSVP by Tuesday, May 24

The Annual Meeting of the Newton Conservators will be held on Wednesday, June 1, 2005, at American Legion Post 440 at 295 California Street in Nonantum. A social hour will begin at 6:15 PM and will include a cash bar. Dinner will be served at 7:00 PM and a business meeting will begin during dinner. In addition to reports from the president and treasurer, members present will elect a new slate of officers and a board of directors for the coming year. Awards for Environmentalist of the Year (Doug Dickson), Charles Maynard Award (Cris Criscitiello) and Directors Award (Bill Shaevel) will also be given.  At about 8:30 PM, Roger Swain will take the podium as this year’s keynote speaker. As one of the nation’s foremost authorities on gardening, he will talk about the phenomenon of community farming and the role it can play in the life of urban areas, and in particular, a city like Newton. Roger is a compelling and knowledgeable speaker, and if you haven’t previously had the opportunity to hear him tell stories about his personal experiences in the garden and on the farm, this is a chance not to be missed!  Including a brief question-and-answer period, the meeting is anticipated to end at around 9:30 PM, allowing all to get home at a reasonable hour.  Members of the Newton Conservators should have received by mail a formal invitation to the Annual Dinner.  The RSVP date printed on the invitation was May 18.  There was a slight delay in getting the invitations out, so the RSVP date has been extended to Tuesday, May 24.  Also enclosed in the mailing to the members was a very important proxy ballot for a change in the by-laws of the Newton Conservators having to do with the disposal of assets of the corporation in case of dissolution.  A sufficient number of membership votes are required to make this change.  Whether or not you are attending the dinner, please return your proxy ballot in the stamped pre-addressed envelope.  The Board of Directors recommends a vote FOR the change in the language of our Certificate of Incorporation.  Return your dinner reservations, payment, and proxy vote together by Tuesday if possible. Attendance at the dinner is $25 per person and checks may be made to the Newton Conservators (this amount is non tax-deductible).  A vegetarian entrée is available.  Replies by May 24 should be sent to Duane Hillis, 499 Winchester Street, Newton Highlands, MA  02461.   Some more background on our Speaker: Roger Swain, a resident of Newton Highlands and a member for several years of the Conservators’ Board of Advisors, will speak about trends in farming and gardening, with particular reference to community farming and the impending acquisition of Angino Farm by the city. Roger Swain is best known as the host of “The Victory Garden” on PBS, a position he held for 15 years. Recently, he returned to television as co-host of a new program, shown locally on Channel 56, called “People, Places and Plants,” created by the magazine of the same name. Since 1978, Roger has been science editor of Horticulture Magazine, writing regularly on a variety of topics. He is the author of several books about gardening and horticulture, including Earthly Pleasures, The Practical Gardener, Field Days, Saving Graces, and Groundwork, and contributor to many more.  As storyteller and lecturer, he is in wide demand, speaking at garden shows, garden clubs, and other venues.  In addition to their Newton residence, Roger and his wife own a working farm in southern New Hampshire. So he brings his own honest, personal experience to the topic of farming. His observations on the art and science of farming, along with the trends, benefits, and consequences associated with community farming, will be a treat for all who attend. And, of course, the timing couldn’t be better, as we continue on many levels the work needed to complete the Angino Farm acquisition and plan for operation of the farm. Be sure not to miss this timely and inspirational talk by our Newton neighbor and America’s most popular gardening enthusiast. 

Newton Conservators Spring Walk Series
Each Spring and Fall, the Newton Conservators organizes a series of walks to local open space areas. These walks are led by knowledgeable leaders and are open to the public. They normally last for an hour or two. Some events are for bicycle or canoe. These walks are a great way to get to know open space areas in Newton. Below is the current walk schedule.   As to weather, when in doubt, check with the group leader.  For more information on the Conservators and schedules of events, please visit our website at  The remaining walks in this Spring’s series are the following:
 Sunday, May 22, 2005, 7:30 AM  -  Cutler Park Bird Walk This spring bird walk will explore the 600-acre wetland known as Cutler Park. This vast wildlife area, just inside Route 128, is an exceptional bird habitat. Cutler Park sits right on Newton's border, and we are excited to introduce our members and friends to the great wetland trail system of this regional park.  Meet at the Cutler Park entrance 1/4 mile south of the Charles River, on Kendrick Street in Needham. Longtime birder Chris Criscitiello, Newton Conservators Board Member, will lead the group.  This outing includes part of Walk 23 in the Conservators "Walking Trails" guide.
Sunday, May 29, 2005, 2PM to 4PM  - Newton/Wellesley/Needham Aqueduct Bike Ride Join a 1.5 to 2 hour bike ride that explores opportunities to link trails that connect the aqueduct system in Newton, Wellesley, and Needham. The aqueducts have long served as a resource for walkers, and this ride will show that it provides a wonderful biking trail, as well. Of particular interest is how the various towns have chosen to mark and manage these linear open spaces. This ride is recommended for ages 12 and up, and an adult must accompany all minors. The trip requires an off-road or hybrid bike (thin tires will not handle this terrain). Helmets are required for all riders  Meet at Starbucks in Waban Square. Henry Finch, Newton Conservators Board Member, will lead.  This outing includes part of Walk 27 in the Conservators "Walking Trails" guide. See also our page, A Loop Along the Aqueducts.
Sunday, June 5, 2005, 2PM, -
Lake Area Canoe Trip on the Charles River This trip is a leisurely paddle that explores the Charles River Lake District. Starting at Charles River Canoe Service, off Commonwealth Avenue in Auburndale (follow the signs to park across the river at the duck feeding area), you will pass along the MDC duck feeding area and park land and go though the narrow channel at Norumbega Park. The trip continues to the Lake District, including Fox Island, views of the Islington Peninsula, Mount Feake Cemetery, and the Waltham watch factory. This lake is well-populated with ducks, geese, blue herons, and the occasional hawk and egret. You will also see small creatures that inhabit the waters, using portable field microscopes. Bring a lunch or snack and binoculars, if you'd like. Our leader, Bill Hagar, will bring along some of his graduate students from the University of Massachusetts and conduct a field study as part of this trip.  If you would like to join the trip, need a canoe, or could loan a canoe, call Bill or Dottie Hagar.  This outing includes the water areas of Walk 1 and Walk 2 in the Conservators "Walking Trails" guide.
Sunday, June 12, 2005, 2PM  -
Nature and Photo Workshop along the Charles River Jim Schpeiser, nature photographer, will lead a tour along the Watertown section of the new Charles River Pathway and back along the Newton section. Jim will provide hands-on instruction in photographing the plants and wildlife along this 2-mile walk. Examples of Jim’s work can now be viewed at Café Nation in Brighton on Washington Street.  Park at the DCR parking lot off Pleasant Street in Watertown, adjacent to the Sasaki Landscape Office sign and meet at the stone pillars on Galen Street. For questions, contact group leader Jim Schpeiser.  This outing includes part of Walk 3 in the Conservators "Walking Trails" guide.
Saturday, June 18, 2005, 2PM -
Charles River Pathway Bike Ride A low energy tour de force will head downstream toward the Museum of Science along the Charles River Pathway. Peter Kastner will talk about the development of the Charles River Basin. No test will be given after the tour. Bring snacks for a rest at the Hatch Shell. Helmets are required.  Park at the DCR parking lot off Pleasant Street in Watertown, adjacent to the Sasaki Landscape Office sign and meet at the stone pillars on Galen Street. Call Peter Kastner, Conservators board member.  This outing is not included in the Conservators "Walking Trails" guide.


The Newton (not just a) Plant Sale – Saturday May 21 and Sunday May 22Don’t miss the fabulous plant sale held today and tomorrow at Newton City Hall.  Today the sale is on til 6 pm and on Sunday, May 22 from 10 am to 4 pm on the lawn at Newton City Hall, 1000 Commonwealth Avenue.  This gardening extravaganza includes shrubs, annuals, herbs, Sedums, grasses, shade-loving plants and amazing conifers. If you're not sure how to use these plants in your garden, ask us for help. There are lectures throughout the day and lots of experts to give advice.  The event it put on by the Newton Pride Committee.

23rd Annual Newton House Tour – Sunday May 22, Noon – 5 pmOn May 22, from noon to 5 p.m., celebrate Newton's distinctive and diverse architectural heritage during the 23rd annual Newton House Tour. The self-guided driving tour features eight homes that range from a 19th-century home listed on the National Register of Historic Places to housing that was built for Newton veterans returning from World War II. Tickets may be picked up after 10 a.m. on the day of the tour at the Newton History Museum, 527 Washington St. Proceeds benefit the Newton Historical Society and the Newton History Museum. $25 day of tour. WGBH member discount available. For more information, visit or call 617-796-1450.

Newton's State of the Environment – Monday, May 23, 7 pm at the Library    On May 23, at 7 p.m., in the Newton Free Library, 330 Homer St., Mayor David Cohen will join a panel of local environmental groups during "Newton's State of the Environment," a discussion of local environmental efforts, actions and forecasts. Water and air quality, solid waste, transportation, pesticides, open space and energy will all be on the agenda.  This event was rescheduled from January snow to this spring night!  Invited participants include:  Charles River Watershed Association, Composting Committee, Comprehensive Planning Advisory Committee, Energy Commission,    Green Decade Coalition/Newton,  High Performance Building Coalition, Household Hazardous Wastes Committee,    IPM Committee (Integrated Pest Management),  League of Women Voters Environmental Issues Committee, Newton Conservators,  Newton Department of Public Works,   Recycling Committee,  Renewable Resources (formerly SUNERGY), Sustainable Newton Committee.  A Newton Environmental Resources Booklet will be presented to all attendees.   For more information, call 617-965-1995 or e-mail info(AT)

The June Environmental Show on NewTVThe Charles River – Newton’s Great Waterway Don’t miss the latest Environmental Show produced by the Newton Conservators for NewTV.  The latest production will focus on the Charles River in Newton and is scheduled to debut on NewTV’s Blue Channel on Saturday, May 28.  Current scheduled times for the Environnmental Show are as follows: Saturday (10 am), Monday (3 pm), Tuesday (1:30 am, 11:30 pm), Wednesday (11:30 am), Thursday (Noon, 4 pm, 7:30 pm).  Check for the latest schedule. The Environmental Show, produced by the Newton Conservators in conjunction with the Green Decade Coalition, was begun in September 2004 with alternating programs by both organizations.  Expected future programs include one on Dolan Pond Conservation Area in August and Kesseler Woods in October of 2005.  This past December’s program, “Recreational Opportunities at Cold Spring Park”, recently received an Honorable Mention at the NewTV Red Carpet Awards in the field production category and the series was mentioned as an “Up and Comer” show to watch in 2005.  Volunteers are welcome to join the production team.  Contact Duane Hillis.  Copies of previous shows on DVD will be provided shortly to the Newton Free Library.

Angino Farm CPA Update

Steps to complete the acquisition of this 2.25-acre historic property are continuing, with good progress made on some fronts. Among the good news is preliminary acceptance by the State Department of Environmental Protection of the conservation restriction that will be held by the Newton Conservators, as required for all purchases using CPA funds. The Conservators recently reviewed and signed the CR and it next goes before the Board of Aldermen to be formally considered and accepted by the city.  This is a critical step since the city has determined that the transaction cannot be brought to a close without this preliminary approval. With this acceptance by the state, the actual purchase of the farm from the Angino family should be completed in the near future. Another issue involves re-zoning of the property. This step requires Board of Aldermen approval, but is not on the critical path. Some work on the buildings and other preparatory work on the land itself may be possible this year, but the reality is that the farm will not be up and running until the spring of 2006.  However you can invest NOW in the success of Newton’s new community farm.  Funds are needed to cover startup costs.  Help meet a generous matching $15,000 Challenge Grant.  Make checks payable to Newton Conservators and mail to PO Box 59001, Newton Center, MA  02459. 
The City of Newton is in the process of setting up a Farm Commission to oversee the Angino Farm, including the choice of a farm operator.  The Conservators want to provide the City with suggestions for nominees to the nine-person Farm Committee.  There are requirements for certain expertise and residency within certain locations.  One requirement that is not in the text of the ordinance for the farm but that will certainly apply is that whoever serves on the Farm Committee should not be a part of the organization that operates the farm.  So, all the farmers in the current farm group are out.  We need to find people who will not be in the farm group who can serve on this committee.  We need suggestions as to who might serve.  You could reply to this email with any suggestions and they will be passed on.  Some of the relevant text from the Farm Ordinance is reproduced below.
Farm Commission; establishment; duties; composition

(a) The Newton Farm Commission (“the Commission”) is hereby established. The Commission shall implement the purposes set forth in this section and manage the operation of the Farm, as herein described.

(b) The Commission’s authority and duties shall include but not be limited to:   (1) Developing a business plan for the operation of the Farm that is designed to achieve the purposes set forth in this section without placing an additional burden on the operating budget of the city;  (2) In the event that the decision is made to contract the Farm’s to an outside entity, the Commission shall establish a procedure for the selection of said entity, which procedure shall be provided in writing to the board of aldermen. The Commission shall conduct the selection  process, at the conclusion of which the Commission shall execute a written agreement between the city and said entity, subject to the approval of the mayor;   (3) Any such contract, as described in paragraph 2, shall require that the contractor at its expense provide the Commission with the following financial reports:     (I) detailed quarterly revenue and expenditure reports, in a format approved by the City Comptroller, not later than 30 days after the end of each calendar quarter;  (ii) independently audited annual financial statements within 90 days after the conclusion of each fiscal year.        (4) The Commission shall meet with the Commissioner of Public Buildings at least semi-annually to review with him the condition and needs of the existing buildings on the Site and to discuss the construction of any contemplated future buildings for the Site.   (5) The Commission shall oversee the operating expenses and revenue associated with the operation of the Farm and provide annual written  reports to the mayor and board of aldermen pertaining to the Farm’s operation and performance with regard to the Farm’s purposes, as set forth in this section.  (6) The Commission shall develop policies and procedures for the  operation of the Farm.  The Commission shall hold a public hearing on the  initial set of policies and procedures prior to their adoption.  This public hearing requirement shall be applicable to subsequent amendments to substantive matters of policy but shall not be applicable to amendments to matters of procedure.  The Commission shall also provide in writing to the mayor,  board of aldermen, and city clerk the final version of the policies and  procedures upon their adoption.   (7) The Commission shall make all reasonable efforts to comply with the standards for organic processes outlined by the Baystate Organic  Certifiers.   (8) The Commission shall afford the public the opportunity to purchase produce at the Site.
(c) The Commission shall consist of nine (9) members as follows: (1) One at-large citizen appointee of the board of aldermen.   (2) One (1) member of the Conservation Commission, one (1) member of  the Historic Commission, and one (1) member of the Parks & Recreation Commission, each of whom shall be selected by the members of the body  they represent.   (3) The remaining five members shall be appointed in accordance with  section 2-8 of the city ordinances. The appointed members shall include at  least one citizen with expertise in farming or agriculture, at least one citizen  with expertise in finance or accounting, at least one citizen with expertise in operating a retail or wholesale business, and at least one member with expertise in sustainable environmental practices.
(d) Appointed members shall serve for terms of three (3) years  or until their successors shall take office. However, in order to provide staggered terms for appointed members, the initial  ppointments shall  be as follows: One member shall be appointed for a one year term; two  members shall be appointed for a two year term; and two members shall be  appointed for a three year term.

76 Webster Park CPA Update
Plans have been progressing well for the Forte property at 76 Webster Park adjacent to the Dolan Pond Conservation Area which was acquired with CPA funds.  The subdivision plan has been making its way through Land Court.  Bids are being solicited soon on the renovation aspect of the original Forte house.  Habitat for Humanity has been tuning the architectural plans for the two Habit units to be built.  A kickoff event for Habitat project will be held on Wednesday, June 1st, 5:30 pm to 9 pm at the Sheraton (Newton Corner).  Unfortunately this fundraising event coincides with the Conservators annual dinner but the two events are geographically close.  We will keep you informed as to how to contribute in various ways to this important first Habitat effort in Newton. 

Environmental Science Program – Summer 2005
The Environmental Science Program began as a Ford Foundation Project in 1967 headed by Dick Staley, a Newton science teacher, and continued for many years under the direction of Cole Stanton. For over 35 years, "Envi Sci" has been an alternative to traditional summer camps.  The program centers around the idea that students learn best about their surroundings when taught by other students in the specific environment. Leaders are trained to educate students while daily hiking or biking to many diverse sites in Newton and surrounding areas.  The highlights of the program include a 12-mile canoe trip on the Charles River, and expedition through the salt marshes of Kittery, Maine, hiking the Blue Hills and Mount Monadnock. The program ends with an exhilarating three-day backpacking trip up the highest peak in the Northeast, Mount Washington.
The Envi Sci program combines fun outdoor activities with learning about the environment. Each year it builds on the "peer education" principle by having the student leaders design, develop, and deliver the materials that the students use. New students are encouraged to return and become leaders in subsequent years, continuing the thread of responsibility for care and teaching about the environment.  A typical activity would be a hike to an area of interest, often in Newton but sometimes elsewhere, such as the Arnold Arboretum. Other activities range from bicycle trips to night walks for learning about nocturnal wildlife. We go on a 12-mile canoe trip on the Charles River, and we take water samples to report on the water quality. The learning materials for each day may cover ecology, geology, botany, pollution issues, or other areas that the student leaders select.  Each year there is a cleanup project in which participants get hands-on involvement with improving an environmental site. Some examples from recent years are Dolan Pond in Auburndale and the Sawmill Brook in newly acquired land formerly owned by the Boston Edison Company.
In 2005, the program will operate from July 1st to July 29th. The program takes up to 30 girls and boys who will be entering grades 7, 8, 9, or 10 by September 2005.  The Environmental Science Program has been licensed for operation as a camp program by the City of Newton Health Department. If you would like more information about the Environmental Science Program, please contact them at 617-969-0288 between 9:00am and 5:00 pm or by email at contact(AT) or mail at Environmental Science Program, c/o David Backer, Executive Director, 47 Page Road, Newton, MA 02460.  Visit their website at


Free Fishing Days – June 4-5

(Courtesy of Mass Wildlife)

Saturday and Sunday, June 4 and 5, are Free Fishing Days in Massachusetts, the only days of the year that residents and non-residents may fish any freshwater streams, rivers, lakes and ponds in the Bay State without a license. All other fishing regulations must be observed. Take advantage of the day to dust off your fishing gear and head for the lake or pond - or if you're already a fishing fanatic, bring your friends or family and get them hooked on the fun!  Free Fishing Days offer a prime opportunity to introduce children and other novices to the sport, especially if you angle for easy-to-catch panfish like sunfish, bluegills or yellow perch. For information on pond maps, boat ramps, stocked waters and other related angling information visit the “Fishing” area in the MassWildlife website at Fishing festivals and events are found in the “Calendar of Events”. Young people under 15 may fish without a license in Massachusetts year round. For Massachusetts residents ages  15 -18 who want to fish the rest of the year, licenses cost only $11.50 annually. An adult license costs just $27.50. Licenses can be purchased on line at or at over 400 license agents statewide. Fishing license fees support fisheries research, angler education, fish stocking programs, habitat protection and many other wildlife related services provided by MassWildlife. For fishing rules, seasons and license vendor locations, check the “Fishing” area of the MassWildlife website at   Free Fishing Days also kicks off National Fishing and Boating Week, June 4 - 12, 2005. A new “Boat Massachusetts” booklet is available on line from the Environmental Police and is designed to give Massachusetts boaters the information needed to be safe and responsible. Boating laws and safety equipment are included.  The link is  Copies are available at state Boat Registration offices in Boston, Hyannis, Fall River, Worcester and Springfield as well as through the Coast Guard Auxiliary and Power Squadron. The Massachusetts Environmental Police encourage people to Boat Smart From the Start by wearing a life jacket, taking a boating safety course, riding in safe boats, and boating sober.  Boaters should also know that Massachusetts law requires that children under 12 years old, all personal water craft riders and all water-skiers must wear an approved life jacket when underway. Drowning continues to be the primary cause of deaths in boating accidents. Over 80% of drowning victims were not wearing life jackets. Fish and boat Massachusetts, where there is more to explore!  

Turkey Tallies and Goose Locations Needed
(Courtesy of Mass Wildlife)

Sportsmen and women, birders, landowners and other wildlife enthusiasts are encouraged to assist MassWildlife by counting turkey families and reporting goose family locations this summer. MassWildlife conducts an annual wild turkey brood survey from June through August. "The brood survey serves as a long term index on reproduction," explains Jim Cardoza, MassWildlife's Turkey Project Leader. "It helps us determine overall productivity and allows us to compare rates of reproduction over a long period of time." Cardoza also points out that citizen involvement in this survey is a cost-effective means of gathering useful data, and he encourages all interested people to participate. A turkey brood survey form has been posted in the “Wildlife” area of MassWildlife's website ( Information needed includes date, town, number of hens seen, and number of poults (young turkeys) and their relative size compared to the hens. Multiple sightings of the same brood should also be noted. The survey period runs from June 1 - August 31. Completed forms should to be mailed to the MassWildlife Westborough Field Headquarters.

Between the dates of June 6 – 20 be on the lookout for families of Canada geese (adults and young) that number 12 or more birds. MassWildlife staff will be banding Canada geese beginning in late June and they need location reports of goose families for banding. Goose banding can take place in many locations: beaches, golf courses, cemetaries, condominium developments, back yards, and municipal parks. If you know where a flock is located, contact Mass.Wildlife(AT) or call your local District Wildlife office to provide the following information: Best address of flock location (or directions), or body of water where the birds are located; approximate number of goslings (young geese); total number of birds; and property owner (if known). Later on in mid-July you can help MassWildlife estimate goose populations by contacting MassWildlife District offices with information from the yellow neck band numbers and symbols seen on collared Canada geese. Sightings will be accepted until Labor Day.

 Young Wildlife Belongs in the Wild  
(Courtesy of Mass Wildlife) The arrival of spring and summer means the arrival of newborn and just-hatched wildlife. These youngsters soon venture into the world on shaky legs or fragile wings and are discovered by people living and working nearby. Every year, the lives of many young wild creatures are upset by people who take baby wildlife from the wild in a mistaken attempt to “save” them. These well-meant acts of kindness tend to have the opposite result. Instead of being left to learn their place in the world, young wildlife removed from the wild are denied important natural learning experiences which help them survive on their own. Most people quickly find that they can't really care for young wildlife, and many of the animals soon die in the hands of well-meaning people. Young wildlife that does survive human care have missed experiences that teach them to fend for themselves. If these animals are released back into the wild, their chances of survival are reduced. Often, the care given to young wildlife results in some attachment to humans and the animals may return to places where people live, only to be attacked by domestic animals or hit by cars. Some animals become nuisances and people have even been injured by once-tamed wildlife. These problems can be avoided if everyone follows one simple rule when coming upon young wildlife: If You Care, Leave Them There! It may be difficult to do, but this is a real act of kindness. "In spring, we receive many calls about young wildlife with no adult in sight," says MassWildlife Biologist Marion Larson. "The young are quite safe when left alone because their color patterns and lack of scent help them remain undetected. Generally the parent will visit their young a few times a day to avoid leaving traces that attract predators. Baby birds found on the ground may be safely picked up and placed in a nearby bush or tree. Parent birds are not disturbed by human scent." Larson recommends people avoid nest and den areas of young wildlife and restrain all pets.  It is illegal to possess most wildlife in Massachusetts. Only when young wildlife are found injured or with their dead mother may the young be assisted, but must then must be delivered immediately to a licensed wildlife rehabilitator. Due to the difficulty in care there are no rehabilitators licensed to care for fawns. Information on young wildlife has been posted at and is also provided at MassWildlife offices. For more information, contact your local MassWildlife District office or Westborough Field Headquarters 
Walking Trails in Newton’s Parks and Recreation Lands

The map guide put out by the Newton Conservators is a great resource for those who would like to explore Newton’s open space.  It would make a great stocking stuffer – it fits nicely in a stocking or in a back pocket.  Many folks have been observed out in our conservation areas, trail guide in hand.  It is available by web, mail and also at Newtonville Books and New England Mobile Book Fair.  Walking Trails in Newton's Parks and Conservation Lands may be purchased for $7.95 online at or by mailing a check to The Newton Conservators, P.O. Box 590011, Newton Center, MA 02459.  Sales benefit The Newton Conservators, a nonprofit citizen advocacy organization which actively promotes the acquisition, creation, and preservation of natural open spaces for the people of Newton. Since its formation in the late 1950's, The Newton Conservators has been instrumental in safeguarding more than 200 acres of open space in Newton, creating several major public parks, and enacting ground-breaking environmental ordinances with respect to the protection and preservation of trees, wetlands and clean air, and the conservation of energy.

 About the Newton Conservators

This email newsletter is sponsored by the Newton Conservators, a local organization that promotes the protection and preservation of natural areas, including parks, park lands, playgrounds, forests and streams, which are open or may be converted to open spaces for the enjoyment and benefit of the people of the City of Newton, Massachusetts for scientific study, education, and recreation.  It further aims to disseminate information about these and other environmental matters.  A primary goal is to foster the acquisition of land and other facilities to be used for the encouragement of scientific, recreational, educational, literary, and the other public pursuits that will promote good citizenship and the general welfare in the City of Newton.  Please visit our website at  or contact us at the address below. 

If you would like to join the Newton Conservators, please send your name, address, phone and email address (if you wish email alerts) to The Newton Conservators, P.O. Box 590011, Newton Centre, MA  02459.  Membership Options are the following:  Individual $25, Family Member $35, Sustaining Member $50, Donor $75, Patron $100.  Membership is tax deductible.  Your membership includes the Newton Conservators Newsletter and emails and invitations to participate in guided tours of local conservation areas, lectures, and other programs and activities.  You will also receive by mail a copy of the new Newton Conservators open space map book, "Walking Trails in Newton's Park and Conservation Lands".

The Board of Directors of the Newton Conservators meets monthly usually on the third Wednesday of the month at 7:30 pm (usually at City Hall).  Members are welcome to attend.  If you wish to attend you can contact us to confirm the date, time, location, and agenda.   

 About Newton Conservators Nature Notes If you would like to be more directly kept apprised of future nature related events, walks, lectures, and exhibits, you are invited to join the Newton Conservators sponsored "Newton Conservators Nature Notes" email list by sending an email request to dolanpond(AT) or contacting Ted Kuklinski.  Newton Conservators Nature Notes is automatically sent to members of the Newton Conservators who provide their email addresses as one of their membership benefits.  Newton Conservators Nature Notes may be found online at  You are welcome to submit any items for this sporadical newsletter via email to the same address.  Please feel free to forward our newsletter to others you feel might be interested in the information contained herein.