BRISTOL - The Willis Street Wildlife Habitat Project will regenerate 7.4 acres of shrubland and young forest habitats to support native wildlife species, according to a press release from the city.
The project began Monday and is expected to be completed in two to three week, the release stated. It is a cooperative effort between the Natural Resources Conservation Services and the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Wildlife Division, the release added.
The land in which the project is taking place is owned by the Environmental Learning Center of Connecticut, located between 514 and 480 Willis St, adjacent to the Eversource powerline, according to the release. To create that environment the project mostly involves the removal of trees, a useful tool for conservation, from that land, it added.
The project will provide shrubland and young forest habitats for many species that rely on those habitats and have declining populations. Specifically, it will provide suitable habitats for the New England cottontail and the American woodcock, according to the Young Forest Initiative, a group that works to make young forests in the appropriate places.
The process of cutting trees, combined with invasive plant control, encourages regeneration of native species and habitat types because it mimics disturbances that drive the natural process of forest renewal, according to the Young Forest Initiative, which joined The Wildlife Division to help restore these important habitats.
The goal of the Young Forest Initiative is to create enough shrubland habitat to support stable populations of struggling shrubland species, according to its website.
Lorenzo Burgio can be reached at 860-801-5088 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org