Join Nature Lovers and Arlington Regional Master Naturalists for a 3-part event.
First, we will perform some habitat restoration work by removing invasives at the Nature Conservancy’s Fraser Preserve. Our focus will be Japanese barberry with its large bushes sporting red berries: for these, we first remove & bag the fruit, then cut & uproot the bushes using garden forks or weed wrenches. And there are areas where the large bushes have been removed, but many small seedlings have come up where seeds got dropped: these can easily be pulled out by hand. Why is barberry worth removing? 1: It’s an invasive exotic the deer won’t eat. 2: It changes the soil chemistry to the disadvantage of native woodland plants. 3: It concentrates mice & therefore tick populations, leading to higher proportions of disease in larger numbers of ticks. Read more about Fraser Preserve.
Second, as a reward for our habitat restoration work, we will do some brief birding along the Potomac River at Riverbend Park where some experienced birders will be available with spotting scopes.
Finally, those of us who are interested will adjourn to nearby Old Brogue, a cozy Irish pub.
Directions - I will try to find some time to pull together written directions, but am not positive that I will have the ability to do so. Please, if you are driving on your own, take some time beforehand to look over directions.
Carpool - Please consider using the site to arrange a carpool. Parking at the Fraser Preserve is not abundant and a caravan of 15 vehicles between the 3 sites (barberry, birding, and beer) may be unwieldy. A carpool will be leaving from South Arlington.
Volunteer release - Volunteers need to sign a release. If possible, please fill out beforehand. It may be found here: http://www.nature.org/ourinitiatives/regions/northamerica/unitedstates/virginia/volunteer/
What to bring - I recommend bringing directions, volunteer release, water, snacks, gloves, and binoculars if you have them. Loppers, clippers, and weed wrenches will be available, but please bring if you can.