Deborah Cramer wrote an outstanding feature for Audubon published May 2019. This feel good – feel proud story is a great read inspiring efforts near and far. It takes a city.
“…(Kim) Smith, a photographer and filmmaker, had inspired much of the effort. While not everyone can be on the beach every day, her images, videos, and blog offered the entire city an up-close portrait of the birds’ daily lives.”– Deborah Cramer
Read the article here
“How Plover Chicks Born in a Parking Lot Spurred a City to Make its Beach Safer: The dramatic ups and downs of a piping plover family in Gloucester, Massachusetts, show what it takes to protect a threatened species” By Deborah Cramer published by Audubon May 23, 2019.
A sewer pipe in Essex broke over the weekend, spewing raw sewage into the Essex River Salt Marsh. I am so very sorry for our local clam diggers–just as the season was getting underway–devastating. The clam flats will be monitored, at a minimum, over the next 21 days before any determination about reopening will be made.
Essex River Clammers
About the Great Marsh
“In Massachusetts, the North Shore’s Great Marsh is the largest continuous stretch of Salt Marsh in New England, extending from Cape Ann to New Hampshire. The Great Marsh includes over 20,000 acres of marsh, barrier beach, tidal river, estuary, mudflat, and upland islands extending across the Massachusetts North Shore from Gloucester to Salisbury. In recognition of these extraordinary resources, a portion of this area was designated by the state in 1979 as the Parker River/Essex Bay Area of Critical Environmental Concern. The Great Marsh is an internationally recognized Important Bird Area (IBA) as it contributes to the preservation of many breeding and migratory birds. This unique complex of natural systems add ecological, economic, recreational, and cultural value to our daily lives both on the coast and inland where land is connected by river and stream networks.” Read more about the Great Marsh Coalition here.
Gloucester public schools have stellar community partners and locales
Mass Audubon Eastern Point Wildlife Sanctuary
Two+ centuries of naturalists in Gloucester is quite a legacy. Here’s a partial list from Robbins to Cramer and Smith to Smith–there have been notable champions most every decade.
- Mason Walton (Hermit of Gloucester)
- Alpheus Hyatt, principal founder of world famous Marine Biological Laboratory at Woods Hole– from 1880-1886 the school was on Goose Cove and later off Lobster Cove
- BH VanVleck (wrote book with David Starr)- instructor at Annisquam seaside laboratory
- Samuel Sawyer land conservation
- Alfred G. Mayor (Hyatt’s son in law) marine zoologist- his studies on marine life led to 1905 book Sea Shore Life
- Prince Mahidol of Thailand “Sanitary Survey of the City of Gloucester, Massachusetts 1921 by M. Songkla” in city archives- Includes brief history of Gloucester and description of public health activities
- Roger Babson land conservation and watershed
- Dr. Ralph Dexter, began his studies on marine life in 1933 (later Kent State) and chimney swifts
- Ivy LeMon banded monarch butterflies to trace their migration wintering in Mexico
- Sara Fraser Robbins curator of education ( the title of her classic book The Sea is All About Us was a nod to Gloucester summer resident TS Eliot’ Four Quartets)
- Betty Smith
- Dan Greenbaum
- Sara Evans
- Philip Weld, Jr
- Jane Benotti
- Deborah Cramer
- Chris Leahy
- Harriet Webster
- Martin Ray
- Kim Smith
- Ian Kerr
organizations such as Gloucester Civic and Garden Club, Essex County Greenbelt, Mass Audubon, Ocean Alliance, Martime Gloucester, UMASS Marine Station…