Wimisink Marsh Important Bird Area Expansion

The Naromi Land Trust expands protection of a freshwater wetland preserve and essential home for birds.

Wimisink Preserve is a 55-acre freshwater wetland in Sherman, Connecticut that provides productive habitat for many kinds of wildlife. The marsh includes open water, the result of beaver activity, and a variety of native flora thanks to invasive plant control by the Naromi Land Trust. 

The Naromi Land Trust used Audubon Connecticut Wetland In Lieu Fee (ILF) Program funding to purchase a perpetual conservation easement over 20 acres of private land known as Bloomingfields Farm in Sherman, CT, located north of and adjacent to the Wimisink Preserve. The conservation easement effectively expands the protected acreage of this preserve.

The Wimisink Preserve is an Audubon-designated Important Bird Area (IBA) and is home to numerous floral and faunal species of conservation concern on a state, regional, and even continental, basis. Species of conservation concern include American Black Duck and American Woodcock during migration; Hairy Woodpecker, Willow Flycatcher, Gray Catbird, Black-billed Cuckoo, Veery, Eastern Towhee, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Baltimore Oriole, among others during the breeding season.  

In 2014, a pair of American Bittern (state endangered) nested at Wimisink Preserve, fledging three young. The state special concern Alder Flycatcher is also present at the site during the breeding season.

Bloomingfields Farm is a keystone parcel in the continued protection and expansion of the Wimisink Preserve. The conservation easement protects an additional estimated 9.9 acres of rich fen wetland, a rare wetland habitat in Connecticut that supports numerous rare plant and animal species. Naromi Land Trust holds the conservation easement, and Weantinoge Land Trust serves as a back-up grantee and holds enforcement rights. This arrangement allows the Weantinoge Land Trust to become the easement holder, should the ownership of the farm transfer to Naromi Land Trust in the future. It also allows for Weantinoge Land Trust to share resources for any potential future easement violations.

Completed: 2019          Project Proponent: Naromi Land Trust          ILF Funding: $140,500

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