Weantinoge grant to support Smyrski Farm
Weantinoge Heritage Land Trust, a nonprofit regional land trust in Kent, has received a $3,000 grant from the Environmental Professionals Organization of Connecticut.
The money will be used to support stewardship at its Smyrski Farm in the Merryall section of New Milford.
The grant will help Weantinoge to build upon its success in improving riparian habitat through Natural Resource Conservation Service grants.
Weantinoge will use the Environmental Professionals group’s grant to inventory the West Aspetuck River riparian corridor to assess which species have benefitted from habitat restoration work. It will also help the trust establish a water quality monitoring program.
The sampling program is aimed at identifying water quality issues from agricultural nonpoint source pollution from erosion and nutrient management issues.
Weantinoge’s Smyrski Farm Preserve, donated to the land trust in 2009, is a working grass-fed cattle, sheep, and hay farm, in New Milford’s historic Merryall section.
Weantinoge’s holdings total more than 340 acres and include pastures, hay fields, wetlands, upland forest, wet meadow, tussock sedge/red maple swamp and extensive riparian zones.
The farm and adjacent Weantinoge lands protect over two miles of the West Aspetuck River, a Class AA water body, the highest ranked stream classification in Connecticut and a significant tributary of the Housatonic River.
Weantinoge has spent decades acquiring land and conservation easements in the West Aspetuck watershed to safeguard the water quality of this potential drinking water resource.