Parish Flats Restoration Project
Wednesday, April 25, 2018
3:15 p.m. - 3:45 p.m. EDT
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Canandaigua Lake is one of 11 Finger Lakes located in the Great Lakes Basin. The waters of Canandaigua Lake have long been a high quality resource and in 2013 were voted “Best Drinking Water” in New York State by the American Water Works Association. Many organizations in the watershed are working to maintain water quality, but an unprecedented blue-green algae bloom in the fall of 2015 demonstrated the vulnerability of Canandaigua Lake’s water quality.
Parish Flats lies at the southern end of Canandaigua Lake along Naples Creek, just upstream of its confluence with the West River. Canandaigua Lake Watershed Council (CLWC) conducted a long term study of the 17 major streams that feed Canandaigua Lake and determined that Naples Creek is a primary contributor of sediment and nutrients. TNC recently acquired a former tree nursery in Parish Flats adjacent to the NYSDEC’s Hi Tor Wildlife Management Area (WMA). According to the WMA Habitat Management Plan, NYS DEC has identified a need to maintain high water quality in the WMA, improve grassland quality, and maintain high functioning wetlands and floodplain forests. These two areas combine to form a project area of over 80 acres of both public and conservation lands.
To maximize yield and increase workability of these former agricultural lands, many years ago stream channels were re-routed into agricultural ditches with additional ditches excavated to lower the groundwater table and reduce the wetness of the soils. While these common practices were effective while the land remained in agricultural use, now that the land has been placed in conservation ownership, they reduce the natural function of the area to support biodiversity, filter water, and attenuate flood flows. The goal of the Parish Flats Restoration Project is to promote diverse, well-functioning, and sustainable ecosystems in the Naples Creek/Parish Flats area to provide high quality habitats, water filtration, and flood attenuation in the Canandaigua Lake watershed.
Bill Nechamen, email@example.com