The Wrack is our collective logbook on the web. Here you will find hundreds of articles on myriad topics, all tied to these two thousand acres of protected coastal land and the yesteryear cluster that lends them identity.
Why "The Wrack"? In its cycles of ebb and flow, the sea transports a melange of weed, shell, bone, feather, wood, rope, and trash from place to place, then deposits it at the furthest reach of spent surf. This former flotsam is full of interesting stuff for anybody who cares to kneel and take a look. Now and then, the line of wrack reveals a treasure.
Robert and Rose Marie are avid lepidopterists, which is a fancy word for people who are enthusiastic about butterflies and moths. This couple's passion focuses on butterflies. Since 2007, they have been busy each year collecting information for the Maine Butterfly Survey.
Now that the butterfly survey has ended, they have turned their butterfly catching talents to producing butterfly checklists for natural areas. That is what brought them to the Wells Reserve. Robert is the primary netter and Rose Marie is the photographer.
The Wells Reserve has released a resource document for using Unmanned Aerial System technology (commonly known as drones) within the National Estuarine Research Reserve System. This roadmap helps Reserves across the country navigate the complex issues surrounding civilian UAS technology and helps them determine how this technology can help achieve the system's vision of healthy coastal ecosystems and thriving coastal communities.
Volunteering is the ultimate exercise in democracy. You vote in elections once a year, but when you volunteer, you vote every day about the kind of community you want to live in.
The votes are in. This year's Laudholm Nature Crafts Festival was the kind of community we should all want to live in. More than 160 volunteers worked together as a tireless, friendly, and welcoming team to make 3,500 visitors and 122 participating artisans feel like there was no better place to be.
2015 was a record-breaking year for the Crafts Festival. I didn't think we could get bigger.
2016 blew it away.
In the summer 2016 issue of Watermark:
- More Than the Sum of Its Parts
- Nik's Notebook
- Teachers Collect Ideas for New Student Projects
- June Ficker, Ever Enlightening
- A New Era
- After Many Years, Joining the Volunteers
- Serendipity and a Good Sense of Direction
- Now's the Time: Investing in Education's Potential
- Lobster Expert Lands at Wells Reserve
Download the Summer 2016 Watermark (5.6 MB)
The Reserve held its sixth annual Monarch Rescue yesterday! Two education staff and seventeen wonderfully enthusiastic volunteers of all ages set out in search of monarch butterfly eggs and caterpillars in fields that will be mowed within the next couple of weeks. Select Reserve fields are mowed each year in an effort to maintain this vital habitat, rather than allow it to eventually grow into forest. The mowing also serves to keep invasive plant species in check.
Each year since 2010 (with the exception of 2011, when no rescue was conducted), the Monarch Rescue teams were tasked with combing the fields while inspecting individual milkweed plants to look for signs of monarchs. Any found eggs and caterpillars were then brought to a field not slated for mowing that year. Milkweed leaves with eggs on the underside were stapled to secure milkweed leaf undersides. Caterpillars were moved to secure milkweed plants. The graph below shows the number of eggs and caterpillars found during each of the six rescues.
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