Describe your volunteer activities at HCT:
My activities at the Harwich Conservation Trust revolve around different aspects of land management. Maintenance and monitoring of conservation properties, springtime surveys of herring runs and eels, helping to determine the boundaries of a recently acquired conservation property and invasive plant removal are just some of the activities that I am tasked with while serving each Tuesday and Thursday.
How long have you volunteered?
Technically, AmeriCorps is not a volunteer group because we do get a small living stipend, but we receive five weeks of training and orientation beginning in early September before we are given our Independent Placement. Therefore I have been serving with Harwich Conservation Trust since October.
What do you like most about it, memorable moments?
My favorite moments with HCT have been getting to know the properties that we protect. Walking the trails and taking note of management issues such as litter and invasive species, as well as recording the wildlife that I hear and see, is interesting and fun. I also liked replacing parts of a damaged fence at the parking lots of one of the properties. A prescribed burn will be conducted soon and I am looking forward to working on it, as well as removing invasive species from various properties. I am passionate about conservation and I want to help make the world a better place.
What’s special about Harwich?
I like that Harwich is a small town with a lot of conservation land. Also I’ve seen first hand how residents love it and act to preserve its character.
What else do you like to do for fun or other activities or volunteering?
I’ve always loved nature and I like to be outdoors and have been birding since age 8 or so. Cape Cod is a great place to be a birder. To be able to view seabirds from land is great; definitely beats getting seasick on a boat. I like to read natural history and history, play board and card games, spend time with friends and my girlfriend and listen to satellite radio and NPR. For many years I performed bird and butterfly surveys and led bird and butterfly walks for parks and groups. I hope to return to those activities soon.
Another thing that has taken quite a bit of my time lately is applying to grad school. I am seeking a career change to conservation and AmerCorps provides me with a jump start, for which I am grateful.