Earlier this season Hancock County Soil and Water Conservation District (HCSWCD) welcomed a Maine Conservation Corps Environmental Steward, Nina Lawonn, into their organization for the summer season. HCSWCD is one of several different district programs all throughout the state of Maine. Each different conservation district has unique services tailored to its region. The mission of the HCSWCD is to provide local conservation leadership, teach the value of natural resources, encourage conservation efforts, and help to plan and implement volunteer programs. Among the services the HCSWCD offers is technical assistance for soil erosion and abatement.
On Friday July 17th, 2015 Nina was joined by Environmental Steward and Community Leader Program Coordinator, Krista Rogers; Training Coordinator Deidrah Stanchfield; and Art Grindle of the Kennebec Conservation District. Also involved in the project were several MCC AmeriCorps members, including Volunteer and Outreach Coordinator Dylan Cookson; and Environmental Stewards, Anna Farrell, Ling Rao, and Kelly Reardon. Nina ‘s objective was to develop an erosion mitigation project for Toddy Pond, located in down-east Maine and a part of the Penobscot River watershed. Like many places in Maine, shoreline erosion is a significant problem for aquatic ecosystems.
Nina led the other MCC members in building riprap along the bottoms and sides of feeder channels to abate erosion from the flow of water into Toddy Pond. Stones were purchased and trucked in by a contractor and piled at the work sites in advanced. The group used wheel barrows to transport the rocks to the channels at three locations around the pond. Among these streams and gullies were hollows where water flow had washed sediment from under roots and topsoil. Working by hand, MCC members and staff filled hollows with small rocks and then covered these with larger stones: this armored the soil from further erosion. At the other sites stones were simply used to cover the bottom of the channel and slow water down while catching sediment before it is washed into the pond.
The Toddy Pond community was very happy to have this work done and even helped support the process, providing wheel barrows, bathroom facilities, and on one occasion a tractor. Before and after photos are below to illustrate the day’s accomplishments: