Stewardship News | Volume 13, Issue 2 | Spring 2010

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Stewardship News A Publication of Audubon International

Volume 13, Issue 2 • spring 2010



Fore!Ever Campaign Tees Off at Brookside Golf Course J o e l l e n La m p m a n


have an image of this petite girl running past me in pink rainboots wearing an oversized t-shirt down to her knees and an equally large smile. She was on a mission to collect mulch that would protect a trumpet vine that she, a friend, and a FedEx volunteer had just planted. And she was having the time of her life. As I looked around, smiling faces were all around the municipal Brookside Golf Course that day. Over 100 players from The First Tee and two dozen FedEx volunteers had come together to make environmental improvements at the golf course as the FedExCup® Fore!Ever sustainability campaign was officially launched. The campaign’s purpose is to teach junior golfers about sustainable golf practices while facilitating ecofriendly public golf course improve-

ments in communities that host PGA TOUR FedExCup tournaments. FedEx has provided environmental improvement grants to six public golf courses used by The First Tee— a youth development program impacting the lives of young people by providing learning facilities and educational programs that promote character development and lifeenhancing values through the game of golf. Through these events, we will reach young golfers and their parents and educate them about ecology and sustainability through hands-on activities. As a part of the environmental improvement grant, I will visit each of the six properties as a first step in deciding what projects can be accomplished. My goal is to choose projects that are unique for each property. I was delighted to find that

“One of the tall fences immediately caught my eye as a backdrop for native hummingbird-friendly vines to grow up,” states Joellen Lampman, Program Manager for the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses.

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As a part of the FedExCup® Fore!Ever sustainability campaign, work like naturalizing shorelines, mulching, and building new tees is a good start for Brookside Golf Club to be designated as an Audubon Cooperative Sancutary. Left: shoreline before naturalization. Middle: players from The First Tee add mulch. Right: players, staff, and volunteers all put in some hard work to rebuild a tee.


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Dear Members and Supporters, Winston Churchill once said “If we are together, nothing is impossible. If we are divided, all will fail.” Of course we all know he was referring to the plight of World War II, but I think the same can be said for environmental stewardship. It takes each and every one of us to do our part and make a difference. Each of the stories you read in this issue demonstrate the need for partnerships. Whether it is between FedEx and The First Tee, the fourteen year partnership of Indian River Club and Audubon International, or Stowe Mountain Resort and the surrounding community, each is a prime example of how we can accomplish more together than we could ever hope to accomplish alone. Best,

Joshua Conway Education and Communications Manager

46 Rarick Road Selkirk, New York 12158 (518) 767-9051 You can reach our staff via e-mail by typing the person’s first initial, full last name @ Administration

Ronald Dodson, President Kevin Fletcher, PhD, Executive Director Mary Jack, Executive Assistant to the President Paula Realbuto, Executive Assistant for Operations Jessica DesLauriers, Development Manager Audubon Cooperative

In this issue…

Sanctuary Programs

Jennifer Batza, Membership Coordinator Jim Sluiter, Staff Ecologist Joellen Lampman, Program Manager Audubon Signature Program

Nancy Richardson, Director Linda Snow, Administrative Assistant Education Department

Joshua Conway, Manager of Education and Communications New York Operations

Fred Realbuto, Director Sustainable Communities Program

On the cover—FedExCup® Fore!Ever campaign tees off at Brookside Golf Course:

6 A New Face for an Old Signature Sanctuary: Indian River Club

celebrates it’s 14th year as a Certified Signature Santuary with a renewed focuse on natural resource management. 8 A Plan for Success at Stowe Mountain Resort: After completion of

Stage 2, Audubon International awards Stowe Mountain Resort certification in the Sustainable Communities Program. 9 Tear-Out Fact Sheet: What’s the Buzz About? Bee Conservation general

information and tips.

Suzanne Zakowski, Manager

Green Leaf Environmental

1280 Old Innes Road, Suite 801 Ottawa, ON K2B5W7 (613) 244-1900 Kevin Gallagher, President

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Want to Meet When We’re In Your Neighborhood?


re you interested in having an Audubon International staff person speak at your local community group, Chamber of Commerce, club, or other venue? We may be in your neighborhood soon. Email us at to schedule a talk or meeting. Some of the places we’ll be in the coming months include the following: • May 23rd—FedEx Fore!Ever Campaign Course Improvement Project, Rockwood Golf Course, Fort Worth, TX—A FedEx environmental sustainability initiative, the FedExCup© Fore!Ever campaign is teaching junior golfers from The First Tee about sustainable golf practices and enabling them to put the knowledge

to use by making eco-friendly course improvements at Rockwood Golf Course. • June 8-11th—Community IPM Working Group Meeting, Annapolis, MD—The Community IPM Working Group of the NE IPM Center fosters the adoption of IPM, a science-based approach to managing pests in ways that generate economic, environmental, and human health benefits, encouraging partnerships with diverse stakeholders from community settings such as landscape, turf, schools, homes, structures, gardens, urban forests and public health issues, and identifying and addressing regional priorities for research, education, and outreach.


Program & Pricing Changes Announced for Communities


he Sustainable Communities Program (SCP) has three stages designed to facilitate assessment, planning, and implementation of projects and policies that make a community sustainable. A community may now join for a one time fee of $500. The assessment will help the community determine what environmental stewardship projects and policies exist, and what should be the focus issues in planning for a sustainable future. For more information please contact Suzi Zakowski by email at

Audubon International Takes Initiative In 2008, Audubon International launched a new strategy to affect change in four specific areas. Each of these Initiatives will provide a focus for our work in the years to come.

Community Engagement, Planning, and Action Get the latest on sustainable community efforts, including Guidelines for Sustainable Waterfront Communities.

Eco-Design and Development See what Audubon Signature Program members have earned eco-accolades from other organizations. www.


Environmental Stewardship and Management

Golf and the Environment

Read the “Process for Green Hotels,” an article from Hotel magazine.

Watch a video highlighting Audubon International’s partnership with Fed Ex and The First Tee.

Audubon International Prepares to Celebrate 20 Years of the ACSP


he Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program (ACSP) and ACSP for Golf Courses will be twenty years old in 2011. To help us celebrate, we’re inviting members to send us those 5, 10, 15, and yes, maybe even 20 year old photographs of the work you’ve done through these programs. Please send us digital images that are at least 4”x 6” and at least 300 dpi.Images may be sent to These photographs will be used throughout the next 18 months in print and on the Internet to help us tell your environmental story and the story of this two-decade old program. We appreciate you participation!


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Audubon International Partners with NRPA


udubon International is proud to announce a partnership with the National Recreation & Parks Association (NRPA), designed to leverage the mutual sustainability goals of both organizations. The two organizations are planning to work to provide more environmental stewardship

and sustainable land management and education training as well as access to Audubon International’s landscapefocused education and certification programs to the tens of thousands of professionals managing millions of acres of park lands across America. “We’re excited to have the opportunity

to team up with the NRPA like this and plan to use our Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program approach to help municipal, state, and regional parks and recreations departments save money and the environment,” says Kevin A. Fletcher, Ph.D., Executive Director of Audubon International.

Free Webinars! To celebrate the mid-way point of the United Nation’s Decade of Education for Sustainable Development, throughout 2010 Audubon International will be hosting a series of training webinars designed to help people become better stewards of the environment where they live, work, and play. Registration is free, but space is limited. Please visit: webinars for more information. Upcoming webinars include: Value of a Community Sustainability Portfolio Date: May 6th 1:30–2:00 p.m. Instructor: Suzi Zakowski Description: Focusing on economic development, population retention, and fundraising, this session explores mechanisms to create a portfolio for residents, government agencies, civic organizations, and businesses.

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Neighbors, Green Neighborhoods Date: May 13th 1:30–2:00 p.m. Instructor: Suzi Zakowski Description: Neighborhood leaders, home owner association managers and board members, and others are invited to sit in on this session to uncover the ways that associations and others can establish a unique sense of place within their municipalities while helping to reduce environmental impacts in and around where they live.

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Community Parks for Environmental Education & Outreach Date: May 25th 1:30–2:00 p.m. Instructor: James Sluiter Description: Town, city, and other municipal park properties are underutilized in communities throughout the United States. Learn how to marry your environmental stewardship efforts with a progressive and effective environmental education and outreach campaign that brings citizens back outdoors and using these community assets.

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Sustainability Indicators to Measure Success Date: June 2nd 1:30–2:00 p.m. Instructor: Suzi Zakowski, Manager Description: Using indicators to measure the success of your community’s sustainability plan is critical for the success of any community-wide effort. Community leaders can learn the ‘whats’ and ‘hows’ of sustainable indicator selection and application.

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Environmental Excellence at Municipal Parks Date: June 9th 1:30–2:00 p.m. Instructor: Jim Sluiter, Staff Ecologist Description: This session is for park and recreation professionals interested in applying an environmental management system approach to managing their municipal park properties. Case studies from parks working with Audubon International reveal simple steps for improving the environmental profile of parks.

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Your Hotel: Tips and Tools Date: June 16th 1:30–2:00 p.m. Instructor: Fred Realbuto Description: For more than ten years, the Audubon Green Leaf Program has been assisting hotels, motels, Inns, B&Bs, and destination resorts to green their operation. Spend time learning what types of actions to take and how to take them to help make your operation greener.

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Water Quality Date: June 17th 1:30–2:00 p.m. Instructor: Joellen Lampman Description: A water monitoring program is a valuable way of getting feedback about the effectiveness of your best management practices. Based on sound, scientific principles, the results can be a powerful tool to help you confirm and communicate that you are employing the correct management strategies. This presentation will discuss the different approaches to monitoring and how to interpret results.

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a Plan to Address Stormwater and Watershed Issues Date: June 23rd 1:30–2:00 p.m. Instructor: Suzi Zakowski, Manager Description: Learn to create a plan and establish goals that address sustainablilty while incorporating your community’s unique priority areas such as stormwater runoff or Watershed land use planning.

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FedExCup® Fore!Ever Campaign Tees Off at Brookside Golf Course Continued from page 1

Brookside Golf Course has a special area set aside for The First Tee of Pasadena’s program. The area is sandwiched between two tall fences protecting it from the driving range and a fairway. The First Tee players have a place to call their own, and, in the future, they will be able to appreciate the projects funded by the grant. We covered a lot of ground during this first event. We wanted the players to get a sense of the hard work it takes to maintain a golf course, and we were provided with a perfect opportunity to build a playing surface. Rose Bowl sod that had been rerouted from the landfill gained new life as the players built a new tee. Golf Course Superintendent, Scott Williams, and staff had cut out an area for the new tee, but it was up to the kids to finish preparing the site. As one boy explained, “We are picking up rocks because we want the grass to grow.” They then laid down the sod. It was hard work, but they were excited as the pieces came together. We also removed about one acre of turfgrass and the players raked mulch over the area with amazed parents looking on. Little did they know that their children were capable of working so joyfully. The combination of building the tee and taking out turfgrass provided the golf course staff an opportunity to talk about the benefits of grass and how removing grass and replacing it with native plants can benefit the environment and create a more interesting golf course. During my initial site visit, my attention immediately went to the large fence separating The First Tee area from a fairway. I knew that I wanted to plant native hummingbird vines that would help make the fence more attractive, provide a food source for hummingbirds, and be a very visual reminder of the course improvement day. We also planted

The Green Golfer Toolkit is here! The staff has been working very hard to bring you a set of toolkits that will help with your outreach and education efforts. Each toolkit is a one stop shop for the outreach and education component of certification. Just follow the guidelines and add a little effort and you will be on your way to being designated as an Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary. Check back often for newly added toolkits. Members can download the toolkits for free through the members only area of our website. For information about how to access the “members only” area please visit:

native grasses along one edge of a pond to provide habitat for frogs and dragonflies. As we discussed plans for these projects, we learned that Brookside Golf Course serves as overflow parking for the Rose Bowl, so the ground is severely compacted. The maintenance staff had to drill holes for the plantings, which we later filled in so the kids would be exposed to the full process of digging, planting, and mulching. Overall, we had three waves of players that we divided into three groups each. Besides the projects discussed above, we also built nest boxes and replaced resource-intensive roses with native drought-resistant plants in the clubhouse landscaping. One girl wrapped up the feel of the day, “We should take care of the course so animals can be healthy and

feel like this is a home for them and also a golf course for us.” And as time goes on, the kids will continue coming to the course through The First Tee program and they’re going to be seeing these plants mature; they are going to see the nest boxes inhabited; and they are going to play off the tee they built with their own hands. They will experience the impacts of their efforts firsthand and recognize that an environmentally managed golf course benefits themselves, wildlife, and the community. I want to thank the wonderful folks at FedEx, The First Tee, and the PGA TOUR for a wonderful experience. We look forward to continuing working together with The FedExCup® Fore!Ever campaign. But most of all, my thanks go to the kids, whose enthusiasm touches us all. l


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A New Face for an Old Signature Sanctuary Na n c y R i c h a r d s o n a n d M i t c h e l l C l a r k


ndian River Club’s 14th year as a Certified Signature Sanctuary was one of transition. In 2008 the 18-hole Ron Garl-designed private golf course in Vero Beach, Florida, was purchased by the Indian River Club Community Association. New ownership gave the club the oppor-tunity to compete for members in an extremely competitive market. To provide an edge, Indian River Club also chose to also renew their focus on natural resource management and protection through a course-wide renovation. What Drove the Decision to Renovate?

The original greens were constructed with a limestone-based drainage rock that was historically used in the area. That rock had started to break down so that the greens no longer functioned as they were designed. The water wasn’t moving through the drainage layer, and the greens were unpredictable to manage. The previous turf grass was Tifdwarf Bermuda, and it had mutated to the point where it the playing surface was inconsistent. Maintenance staff was using more fertilizers and pesticides to maintain an acceptable quality for their members. So it became obvious that Indian River needed to make improvements to stay competitive

in a well established private club market. Many courses in Florida are choosing not to over-seed in an effort to save money and water over time. Indian River had this same interest but could not make such a choice with the current grasses. In previous years, they over-seeded greens, tees, and fairways which, required approximately 4 weeks of preparation and establishment to get the over-seed to a playable standard. The aerification process had become a real challenge in the spring when it was time to transition the over-seed back to the Bermuda. The maintenance staff felt they were losing another four weeks to substandard conditions. During the active summer season in Florida, the club used to do many outside events to supplement income. However, in the past three years, outside events and professional tournaments have really declined largely due to the inconsistency of the greens. Their wish was to host more outside events and US Open Qualifying tournaments in the future bringing in more revenue for the club. What Was The Scope of the Project?

The budget for the renovation was one million dollars. The scope of work consisted of completely rebuilding the

greens to USGA specifications, reshaping and improving the driving range complex, capping the tee boxes with 4� mix from the old greens, adding bunker features, an re-grassing all impacted areas (greens, tees, fairways). They went through a traditional bid process, and chose Barbaron, Inc. to do the work. Their specialty is doing renovations and they ended up doing all the work for approximately $900,000. Indian River used the remaining money from the budget to do in-house projects, install bunker sands, and make some clubhouse improvements. The end product would be a new golf course (except for the rough) for $950,000. The renovation began on May 1, 2009 and was completed on September 30, 2009 with the golf course closed during that time. What Changes Were Made?

The re-grassing of the golf course was done with what Indian River considered as the two best grasses available in their region. The greens were grassed with Mini Verde and the tees and fairways were sprigged with Celebration Bermuda. The sandy fairways and tees were treated with an organic compost material, to create an 80/20 mixture in the top 1 inch. Both grasses have similar tendencies in regards to being vigorous, using less

Clubhouse at Indian River Club.


Sumps were installed where natural filtration through vegetation is not possible to prevent unfiltered drainage from the greens from entering nearby lakes and ponds.

water, holding their color during winter, and being efficient users of nitrogen. Because the greens are such a huge priority, they wanted to make sure everything was done correctly. The original shape of the greens had been lost over time and all the lobes and character had gradually disappeared. So the greens were brought back to their original location, size and shape. Since the irrigation source has been reclaimed water, it is believed that this water led to the early demise of the previous greens rock layer. A local rice rock (a limestonebased product) was used for the rock layer but over time, it turns to dust and clogs drainage rather than assists in filtration. So granite was chosen as a replacement rock for the renovated greens. The granite cost more than the local limestone-based product, but they felt it was worth the upgrade for longevity reasons. The greens drainage pipe was replaced and the greens mix of 85/15 was amended with five organic products that contained slow release nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. The driving range was re-designed because of a need for storage for all the old greens material and strippings from the fairways. Because of that need, the driving range fairway and rough were reshaped with those materials giving more contours and features to the fairway. The practice area was also expanded by adding three additional practice bunkers, and a new practice green on the back of the range. They installed sumps to all green drainage outfalls that go directly into the lakes and ponds. These sumps, which were installed in-house, were designed with help from Audubon International.

The goal with the fil-tration sump is to protect water quality by filtering any drainage from the green before it can enter a lake, pond, or other water body. Sumps are typically used in areas near water where 25 feet of filtration through vegetation or non-managed turf is not available. The tees on Hole #6 are surrounded by white sand trails, which were also cleaned out to create open areas of white sand. When the tees on #6 were resurfaced, they left the slopes in native white sand to blend in with the scrub jay habitat located there. The right side of #6 fairway was accented with a dune feature to create a natural target from the tees. The dune was constructed and capped with native sand from the fairway. They also added some native grasses to the dune to create a natural look. The main drainage canal which runs through holes 11, 17, 16, and 15, was de-mucked to a depth of 3 feet. The organic matter was used to fill fairways on the adjacent holes. Since that cleanup, they often see otters and fish swimming in the canal. The aquatic plants which border the canal and act as filtration from golf course runoff were not disturbed during this process. Results

The goal of this renovation was to provide the Indian River Club membership with a consistently playable golf course that would last for years to come, with as little impact on play (which is the bottom line) as possible. Indian River Club believes they did just that. The decision to change the drainage rock to granite gives an indefinite lifespan for the drainage layer therefore prolonging future changes. If the greens need to be re-grassed in the future, there shouldn’t be any issues with the drainage of the greens. The Mini Verde has given players back eight weeks of quality golf versus eight weeks of poor putting conditions. This will have a huge impact on the bottom line, due to an increase in play during these periods.

Not over-seeding has saved the club valuable electricity and water. They used 80 million gallons of water in 2009 which is 10 million less than in 2008 and that amount included water for a grow-in. The club will start to pay for water in 2010 at the rate of $.15/1000 gallons. So any water saved is money in the club’s pocket. Last year they would have saved $1,500 in water expense. The improved playing conditions during the month of November, to go along with no money spent to overseed (at the cost of $38,000 annually) and the reduction of labor during the winter months has made an impressive impact on the bottom line. They are now managing the club with 12 full time workers, as opposed to 16 in the past. This is a savings of approximately $100,000 per year. Mitchell Clark, Indian River golf course superintendent, summed up the results by saying “The future will tell us more about our success from the renovation, but the preliminary signs are good ones. We need to have a couple of more years of data to know how we are doing. Then based on that data, we will fine tune our management practices and budget based on the needs of the golf course and membership.” Indian River Club registered in the Signature Program on June 9, 1994 and on November 11, 1995 became the third project in the world to become certified as a Signature Sanctuary. The residents and members continue to be avid supporters of the Audubon International Signature Program. l

Indian River Club chose Celebration Bermuda to sprig the tees and fairways.


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A Plan for Success at Stowe Mountain Resort S u z a n n e Za k o w s k i


esort destinations rely on the environment, both natural and constructed, to provide the basis for attracting visitors. However, destinations can face adversity both in development and operation because of the impact on the environment. Ski Resorts are especially believed to have harsh environmental impacts due to water and energy use. Add destination amenities such as golf courses and homes, and the environmental impacts can quickly accumulate. Five years ago, Stowe Mountain Resort partnered with Audubon International to ensure the environmental impact of new construction was minimal. Starting with the Audubon International Signature Program, the Resort created a natural resource management plan for building the golf course. Management was eager to expand the efforts to the whole resort. While the comprehensive plan incorporated many rigorous environmental standards, operators realized that joining the Sustainable Communities program would have significant environmental, social, and economic benefits. The program gives them access to innovative resources, support, third party oversight, and a competitive marketing advantage. The first step was to assess the comprehensive plan and policies in place. The results were impressive, and the Resort earned the Audubon International Green Community Award, recognizing the completion of Stage 1 of the Sustainable Communities Program and the voluntary policies and practices in place. Management didn’t stop there. Stowe Mountain Lodge’s management company, Destination Hotels & Resorts, created the “Destination Earth” program in early 2008. A taskforce established a “green team” at each Destination property nationwide, to

adopt and implement earth-friendly practices in their businesses and to become better stewards of the natural resources that they utilize, and to monitor the effectiveness of these practices. The Resort committed to the sourcing of environmentally sensitive products and services locally, and purchasing organic, environmentally friendly/responsible and recycled supplies whenever possible, and to create partnerships with other organizations committed to preserving the environment. The goal was to lead associates to apply eco-friendly practices in their daily operations by utilizing environmentally-responsible building materials and strategies for new properties and renovations, retrofitting existing properties with energy-efficient lighting, heating and cooling systems, as well as water-saving devices, and implementing tools that allow each property to continually measure their progress. These additional policies and practices were incorporated into the Resort’s vision plan in Stage 2 of the Sustainable Communities Program. Throughout Stage 2, Rob Apple, Planning Manager, worked with Audubon International to complete a goal-oriented vision plan that addresses fifteen focus areas. The objective is to organize corporate policies and longterm strategies in one central location. The portfolio that is created can serve as a guiding document for all departments, guests, and homeowners. Once the plan is completed, indicators that help measure progress are chosen. In February of 2010, Stowe Mountain Resort was awarded Certification in the Sustainable Communities Program by completing this task. Stowe Mountain Resort has achieved a high level of success with the goals outlined in the plan. The Resort is

Food Sourcing—The Resort has committed to support local farmers and community supported agriculture in food operations resort wide and the local economy by using local products whenever possible and thus reducing reliance on food that increases the carbon footprint of the resort.

Rural Heritage—To maintain the “look and feel” of Mt. Mansfield and the Smugglers Notch region, Stowe Mountain Resort has worked with Vermont Land Trust, Vermont Department of Fish & Wildlife, Vermont Department of Forests, Parks & Recreation, and Audubon International. The planning and construction efforts have allowed the resort to utilize only a small percentage of available land in its development efforts.

categorized as a private community in Audubon International’s Program. The “community” in destination resorts is not only the management, homeowners, and employees, but the visitors, guests, local, regional, and state residents. The impact of the Resort’s efforts has a watershed effect. For instance, the local and regional economy benefit from purchasing practices and tourism. But, perhaps the most beneficial result of the destination’s sustainable practices are the opportunities to “think globally, act locally”—everyone who learns about the Resort’s efforts begins the education process by gaining knowledge that can be turned into action. continued on page 11

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What’s the Buzz About? Bee Conservation

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o anyone who has ever been stung by a bee, the idea of actively attracting bees may raise hackles. But a closer look at bees proves that enhancing habitat for native species presents many benefits and poses no harm. Fortunately, there are simple things you can do to help bees thrive on your property. Not only will habitat enhancements benefit bee species themselves, they will add beauty and diversity to your landscape and provide a valuable ecological asset to your community.

Bees vs. Wasps

People are generally stung by wasps, like yellow jackets or hornets, or by honey bees, a non-native species brought to the New World by Spanish conquistadors. These species live in hives or colonies, so contact with them can create a swarm of trouble. In contrast, most of the more than 4,000 species of native bees in the United States are solitary, non-threatening creatures. Our native bees play a critical role in pollinating the majority of flowering plants. Why Protect Bees?

About two-thirds of plants need insects or other animals to pollinate them, and bees are the most

important pollinators. On a typical foraging trip, a female bee may visit hundreds of flowers. She will eat the energy-rich nectar to power her flight, and collect pollen and nectar to take back to her nest to provide food to her offspring. As the bees forage, pollen is moved between plants. Without this exchange of pollen female plant ovules will not be fertilized and neither seed nor fruit will develop. Research evidence is overwhelming that wild pollinators are declining around the world. Chief causes include fragmentation and loss of habitat, pesticide use, and changes to plant communities from different land management practices and invasion by exotic species.

“If the bee disappears from the surface of the earth, man would have no more than four years to live.” —Albert Einstein

Bees vs. Wasps & Flies • Bees are fury; wasps are long and slender. • Bees feed on nectar and pollen. • Wasps are predatory and have taken a liking to human food. • Native bees are not aggressive, wasps are. • Bees have 4 wings, flies have 2. • Bees have smaller eyes than flies. • Bee antenna are thicker than the antenna of flies.

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This hoverfly is very similar to a bee, but notice it does not have any hairs or antenna and has very large eyes.

Getting Started To conserve native bees on your property, you must focus on providing two key aspects of bee habitat: native plants for nectar and pollen; and nesting sites. No special equipment or protective clothing is needed when working with native bees and encouraging native bees will not create any threat to people. Honey bees are a social species, therefore they create hives. Providing nesting sites for native bees, which are mostly solitary species, unlike honey bees, will not attract non-native honey bees. Provide Food

Adding native plants that are rich in nectar and pollen is the best way to attract and sustain bees. You can start by planting native flowers in existing gardens or borders. On golf courses, non-play areas are ideal sites for naturalizing and will provide larger foraging sites. As an added benefit, native plants will also attract wildlife like butterflies and birds, make your property more attractive, and reduce long-term maintenance.


Tips and Techniques:

Transplant. In most situations, the best way to enrich habitat is by planting pre-grown transplants. Controlling weeds and watering during the first growing season are particularly important. Diversify. Bees need nectar and pollen from early spring through fall, so try to ensure that there is a diversity of local native plants with a range of flowering times in the habitat. Choose native. Some good bee plants include: yarrow, golden rod and wild mint. Shrubs to plant include; salmonberry, grape, and willow.

Logs and Snags–Get some logs or old stumps and place them in the wildlife garden or naturalized habitat patches you’ve created. Drill holes at least 4” deep and 3/32” to 3/8” diameter into the logs. Leave dead tree snags standing when they don’t pose a safety hazard, to keep natural nest sites for bees. Nesting Blocks –Bee nesting blocks can be made from blocks of lumber at least 4” x 4”, and 8” long. In one side of the block, drill lots of holes 3/32” to 3/8” diameter and almost all the way through the block. This block can be fixed to a stake or tree in a sunny, preferably eastward facing spot. Bare Ground –Simply clear the vegetation from a small area (about 6’ by 6’) and compact the soil. A few rocks placed in the cleared area will improve it by adding basing places and help warm the soil. Where possible, create bare areas on south facing slopes or banks. Choose dry, well-drained ground for groundnesting bees. Sand Pits and Sand Piles –If you have lots of room, dig a sand pit about 12’ square and 4’ deep and fill it with fine-grained white sand. Or build up a sand pile about the same size.

Provide Nest Sites

There are several simple ways in which nesting sites can be made for bees. Many of these mimic natural features that bees prefer, though not all will be suitable for your site. There are two primary types of nest that you can make—ground nests and wood nests. The location of the nest sites is important. Bees like warm conditions, especially in the morning so that they can become active earlier. Shelter nests from the worst weather with the entrance facing east-southeast.

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A Plan for Success at Stowe Mountain Resort Continued from page 8

Waste Reduction—The new Spruce Camp Base Lodge established a food composting program for its kitchen and is currently expanding this program to its public areas. In 2009, the food composting program resulted in a landfill diversion rate of over 84% for the new Stowe Mountain Lodge. The resort was awarded the 2009 Silver Eagle Award for Environmental Excellence by the National Ski Areas Association. The award hails Stowe for its leadership and innovation in waste reduction and recycling. Stowe Mountain Resort developed a stand-out waste reduction program by highlighting the power of food.

Environment and Wildlife—The resort has conserved over 2,000 acres of natural habitat; 10 acres are summit terrain, which is highly specific breeding ground for Bicknell’s Thrush. Peregrine Falcons, Moose, and Bear are other major species that are being protected through these conserved acres. Food Sources for local wildlife have been planted on the Stowe Mountain Club Golf Course and have been integrated into the landscaping. Through partnerships with the Vermont Agency Natural Resources, The University of Vermont, and the Green Mountain Club, the ridgeline of Mount Mansfield is managed and used for research by the university environmental professors and students.

Energy and Resource Use Efficiency– Since 2000, Stowe Mountain Resort has installed energy efficiency improvements that are resulting in annual electrical use savings of 6,420,237 kW per year. Purchasing policies have been established that place a priority on the purchase of sustainable products such as 100% post consumer recycled paper, compostable eating utensils and plates, cups and biodegradable trash bags. The resort has retrofitted existing properties with energy efficient lighting, and heating/ cooling systems and all new buildings have incorporated lighting and HVAC systems that either meet or exceed Vermont’s Commercial Buildings Energy Standards.

Outreach and Education—An Environmental Advisory Committee was established to identify potential additional environmental actions. The Employee Handbook has been revised to include more content describing the resort’s environmental efforts. Stowe Mountain Resort currently partners with groups to provide access for environmental education forums and public seminars such as birding events, Stowe Garden Fest, and nature walks, and tours that highlight the use of native vegetation and plans for all of the Spruce Peak landscaping.

Water Quality—Current stormwater runoff from the development area is collected and stored in two snowmaking ponds to allow reuse of stormwater for both snowmaking and golf course irrigation. The mountain trail system is managed under management plan directed at improving the hydrologic characteristics of the trail system. Two new wetlands were created adjacent to the main snowmaking reservoir to help filter drainage from the golf course before entering the reservoir.

Transportation—The Resort established an employee ride share program that enables employees to park in lots located at the base of the mountain if they travel with three or more individuals, and contributed $40,000 for the operation of the municipal public Mountain Road Trolley system which experienced a 7% increase in ridership in 2009. There is a no idling policy for all resort vehicles and this policy, as well as other resort environmental initiatives, is highlighted in all employee orientations.

For more information about Audubon International or the Sustainable Communities Program, please visit


Stewardship News


Audubon International publishes Stewardship News four times a year. Inquiries, contributions, or letters to the editor should be addressed to: Joshua Conway, Editor Audubon International 46 Rarick Road Selkirk, NY 12158

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New York Green Leaf Hotel Program Pilot Phase Completed Audubon International is proud to announce the completion of the initial phase of launching the Audubon Green Leaf™ Eco-Rating Program for Hotels throughout New York State. “With support and partnership from the New York State Department of Conservation, the Pollution Prevention Institute at the Rochester Institute of Technology, the New York State Hospitality & Tourism Association, we’ve been able to work efficiently and

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effectively with an initial ‘freshman class’ of 42 hoteliers across the state to highlight the benefits of the program for any lodging facility,” states Kevin A. Fletcher, Ph.D., Executive Director for Audubon International. To learn more please visit: or

Audubon International is a non-profit environmental organization dedicated to fostering more sustainable human and natural communities through research, education, and conservation assistance. Programs seek to educate, assist, and inspire millions of people from all walks of life to protect and sustain the land, water, wildlife, and natural resources around them. Funding is provided by memberships, donations, and program sponsorship. The ACSP Golf Program is sponsored by The United States Golf Association. The newsletter is printed on recycled paper.

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Help us to keep up to date! Phone: (518) 767-9051 Web Page: e-mail: Audubon International 46 Rarick Road Selkirk, New York 12158

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