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The 2017 FAR Summer Ecology Camp had a busy first few weeks! On July 14, participants learned about climate change and biodiversity from one of our consultants and also built solar-powered models. In the afternoon, they tested the water quality of the oxbow near the stormwater wetland at Alewife Reservation. Tests for cyanobacteria were negative, but dissolved oxygen levels were low (6 mg/L).

On July 17, participants learned about designing a green area taking into account the area, climate change and flood risk areas, people, and the wildlife. They were each assigned a role in their teams, for example environmentalist, government, designer/ architect, and community professional.

Photos by Jake Stout

Camp participants assemble solar models.

Participants had many different models to choose from and experiment with.

This model is solar-powered but does not use electricity.

A participant collects a water sample at the stormwater wetland.

After a water sample is collected, the container is sealed so it can be analyzed in a safer, more convenient or (on rainy days) drier location .

Water is poured into a vial for testing.

Some tests require adding multiple chemicals to a sample to indirectly measure a parameter of interest (this process is called 'titration'). Here, one chemical is extracted from a storage jar.

Here, that chemical is added to the water sample.

Finally, a second chemical is added to the mixture. When enough of this second chemical has been added, the mixture will change color. The amount of that second chemical that was added reveals the concentration of the parameter of interest (which otherwise could not be inexpensively measured in the field).

Participants begin working on their green-space design projects

Participants continue to make progress on their projects.

A map nearing completion.

A participant explains the final design of the green space group project.

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winter wildlife walk Presentation Spotlighting Alewife Reservation
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Regional, National and International Climate Change
Aggregated by David Landskov of Sustainable Arlington and FAR board member.
Local Resources
About Friends of Alewife Reservation

The Alewife Reservation is a unique natural resource for the communities of Belmont, Arlington and Cambridge and home to hundreds of species, including hawks, coyotes beavers, snapping turtles, wild turkeys and muskrats, the reservation is a unique natural resource for the community.
Historical information (Powerpoint)

Friends of Alewife Reservation works to protect and restore this wild area and the surrounding area for the water quality, native plants, animals and over 90 bird species with paths for walking, running and biking, recreation, and for classroom education and research. We regularly steward and preserve the Reservation area for wildlife and for the enjoyment of present and future generations.

photo of nature walk

About Friends of Alewife Reservation
Statement of Purpose
Virtual Tour
Right now, view the wildlife-rich North Trail of Alewife Reservation.
MA Dept. of Conservation and Recreation (DCR)
Master Plan for Alewife Reservation
Citizen Forester newsletter archive
History of Cambridge
Free Download from Google Play
The Birds of the Cambridge Region of Massachusetts

by William Brewster 1906
Nuttal Ornithological Society

Biodiversity Study of Alewife Reservation Area: Species, Habitat, Ecosystems

Inventories by David Brown, wildlife assessor (2003, 2004.) Published by and available from FAR for $10. Write or call for your copy. (sample)

Updated Dave Brown Inventories (2008, 2010)

Inventories of Alewife Reservation Wetland Plants by Walter Kittredge, Botanist (2013)
Phone: 617-415-1884
Email: info@friendsofalewifereservation.org
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