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Lafarge


Site subsidiary: Lafarge North America
Site name: Chase Sand Plant
Location: Middle River, MD USA
Wildlife at Work certified since: 2010

Description:

The Chase Sand Plant is located 20 miles north of Baltimore on 350 acres of land. Many different habitats make up the property, including 40 acres of woodland, 25 acres of wetlands, six ponds, and 10 acres of open field habitat. The five dedicated wildlife team members manage 20 acres for wildlife.

The wildlife team started an artificial nest box program by surveying the property for the best places to install nest boxes for native songbirds. In October 2009, a Cub Scout troop helped the wildlife team construct and install ten nest boxes. Bluebird pairs had occupied three of the boxes by the end of March. Volunteers monitored the boxes once a week during the 2010 breeding season and observed a total of eight fledglings.

In order to provide habitat for pollinators, the wildlife team researched pollinator-friendly species to plant in a pollinator garden. In the spring of 2010, the wildlife team invited local Boy Scouts to learn about pollinator habitat and conservation while planting a garden at the property's entrance. Volunteers planted 24 native plants including switchgrass, hay-scented fern, Virginia bluebells, and trumpet honeysuckle. These plantings, in addition to existing shrubs, will provide food and shelter for multiple life stages of a variety of pollinator species.

The Chase Sand Plant began a land reclamation project at the northwest end of the property. Employees observed non-native invasive seedlings of tree of heaven and princess tree popping up in the re-graded areas. The team researched how to identify non-native invasive plants, and began hand-pulling the seedlings. Although the pulling method is effective, it can be difficult, so the team is partnering with the Maryland Department of Natural Resources to develop a better way to control the seedlings until a native wildflower meadow is established.

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