Tidmarsh Fully Re-Opens to the Public
The wait is over—Mass Audubon is so excited to welcome the public back to Tidmarsh Wildlife Sanctuary! The parking lot and entrance trail have re-opened. Both have been closed since late summer 2020 due to work on a large habitat restoration project.
We're pleased to announce that we've successfully removed the last structure restricting the natural flow of the West Beaver Dam Brook! Now that it's been re-connected to its headwaters at the town-owned Foothills Preserve, the brook can finally flow unimpeded to the ocean.
Improved Habitat & Climate Resilience
Restoring cold-water streams like the West Beaver Dam Brook allows migratory aquatic animals to move freely between the freshwater and saltwater habitats that are critical to their life cycles. In addition, efforts to restore stream connectivity are an important part of increasing overall climate resiliency.
The brook replaces the man-made pond at Tidmarsh's entrance that was constructed in the 1980s. The pool's clay bottom was of low ecological value and harbored numerous invasive species. The natural cold-water stream flowing through this area will greatly increase the quality of wildlife habitat at the sanctuary!
New Features for Visitors
This project didn't only include improvements to benefit wildlife. We've added two outdoor classrooms along the stream corridor! Visitors of all ages can now get their feet wet—figuratively and, in some cases, literally—at these hands-on learning spaces.
Expanded trails in this area are already under construction, including a universally-accessible All Persons Trail. More trails and improvements will follow in the coming years.
Up Next: Streamside Habitat Restoration
The Massachusetts Environmental Trust (MET) has awarded Mass Audubon a $30,000 grant to restore wetland and floodplain forest vegetation along approximately a half-mile of West Beaver Dam Brook at Tidmarsh. The waterway, which empties into Plymouth Bay at White Horse Beach, is a cold-water stream that once supported Eastern Brook Trout. Restoring habitat for the state's only native trout is one of the goals of the project.