Chuck Hardesty & Paul Cameron
(From the Reclamation Committee Notes)
Chuck Hardesty offered a quick update on the beaver situation on the pond before rushing off to depart for his new residency in Boulder, Colorado. (Chuck has put in a lot of hours working for the pond and has done an excellent job for us. Best wishes to Chuck on his new job an life in Colorado. The pond committee will miss his input and valiant efforts).
Beavers had plugged the culvert under the Rte. 62 bridge in Wilmington and as water was rising, there were several calls made to the Wilmington DPW to help remove the packed debris. The day before Thanksgiving, the Wilmington DPW did remove the debris and when Paul Cameron went back to check the water levels a few days later, levels had dropped 12 – 18″ or more.
Chuck suggests some type of screening be put in place to keep the culvert clear. Very little support has been given by the Town of NR on helping with the beaver situation and this is something Paul and Chuck have been working on.
Town support is needed to help control the beavers and to breech the dams and unclog the debris created by the beavers. They applied for a special permit to breech the beaver dam at the end of Fieldcrest Road but due to pesky paperwork, will have to wait until after the next ConCom (Conservation Committee) meeting on Jan. 13th before final permission is given.
They have also applied for a Beaver Deceiver but that is on hold until spring, as the plastic used in the deceiver is not pliable enough in the cold weather to allow for installation at this time.
Volunteers are needed to help with the breaking apart of the dam when permission is finally given. Over the knee or hip boots will be needed. Let us know if your willing and able to work in the ice and cold to help breech the dam.
Martins Pond Beaver Wars–In the News
Protect Your Trees From Beavers
Several beavers have been spotted in the pond, and quite a few trees have been felled.
If you care to protect a tree in your yard which is close to the water, Mass Audubon recommends the following:
- Get some metal mesh
- Wrap the base of the tree from the ground up to about 3.5 feet
Flood Emergency Program
A Flood Emergency Program has been setup to coordinate activities between police, fire, schools, residences, etc., thanks to Janet Nicosia.
– The word from the DPW is that the access onto Rt 125 will continue to be used in the event of flooding. They agreed that police should be on duty on 125 for safety and that only right hand turns on your way out should be allowed. Signs should be readied under the emergency plan above.
This plan was sent out to everyone a while back, but if you would like to see it, contact Janet Nicosia.
From 2003 Reclamation Committee Report)
The Army Corp of Engineers will use a Hydro-Rake in the Ipswich River at the Martins Pond Bridge on Burroughs Road. They are only going to rake approximately 500 feet down the river and hopefully 10 – 20 feet across, as a part of a pilot program.
They will study what is removed and the effectiveness of removal. The aim here is to widen the river by removing the monstrous Purple Loosestrife root balls and other vegetation, so as to open the river for water flow and perhaps, recreational use such as kayaking and canoeing as well.
The report will be presented to the State Representatives who in turn will apply for an Environmental Bond to continue the raking and opening the river for water drainage in an effort to alleviate flooding. This pilot project is being paid for by the North Reading DPW.
Also being studied, is how large to make the culvert at Benevetto’s. Benevetto has agreed to upgrade a culvert there for greater water flow but what size, pipes, the design, etc. must be determined.
And what to do about the Rte. 62 bridge in Wilmington. Wilmington has not been willing to replace the old bridge so North Reading paid to have the bridge rated and it failed. Hopefully, this will bring the situation to the State’s attention and then, hopefully, the bridge will be replaced with a much larger culvert and/or a better system to prevent the clogging that occurs underneath the bridge that dams the water up in Martins Pond. At the present time, this is the number one problem when it come to flooding on Martins Pond. The culvert under the bridge becomes clogged and backs the water into the pond.
The flood boards located at the bridge are also a problem and meetings with Wilmington have been on going and continue to find a compromise that would benefit both NR (specifically the pond and Wilmington).
Charts to indicate water levels and high risk flood areas will soon be available for viewing online. These charts will serve as indicators for increased beaver activity which will streamline beaver control efforts.
Please contact Janet Nicosia if you notice water levels rising in your area of any other location at Martins Pond.