DRA and Wawenock Golf Club partner in natural pest control project-1

DRA and Wawenock volunteers prepare to install bluebird boxes on the golf course.

Wawenock Golf Club in Walpole and Damariscotta River Association (DRA) recently collaborated on a project to control insect pests at the golf course using biological instead of chemical means.

On a sunny and brisk April morning, a crew of around twenty DRA and Wawenock volunteers, including students from Lincoln Academy’s IDEAL program, installed 18 bluebird boxes in open areas around the greens. The boxes are designed to appeal to both Eastern Bluebirds, a member of the thrush family that eats grubs and insects on the ground, and Tree Swallows, which feed on flying insects.

The golf club uses careful integrated pest management practices and hopes it can reduce its pesticide needs by attracting the right kind of birds. The partnership with DRA, a local land trust concerned with clean water and healthy habitat for wildlife as well as people, is a natural fit.

Wawenock and DRA are exploring opportunities for further collaboration, including a project to build one or more bat houses at the golf course.

Wawenock Golf Club is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide opportunities for the entire community — young and old, rich and poor — to learn, play, and practice the game of golf on a high-quality course at the most affordable price possible.

Located on Route 129 in Walpole, the club is a nine-hole, links-style course, in operation since 1928. The fairways are generally open, with very few trees. For more information, call (207) 563-3938 or visit online at www.wawenockgolfclub.com.

A non-profit, membership supported, and nationally accredited land trust and conservation organization, Damariscotta River Association is dedicated to preserving and promoting the natural, cultural, and historical heritage of the Damariscotta region, centered on the Damariscotta River.

DRA has active programs in the areas of land conservation, stewardship, community education, water quality monitoring, marine conservation and cultural preservation.

Visitors are welcome at the Great Salt Bay Heritage Center in Damariscotta as well as the many other DRA properties throughout the region. Learn more by calling (207) 563-1393 or online at www.damariscottariver.org.