Field Notes
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Field Notes Entry   
Atlantic Cedar Wetland Creation Recognized as “Exemplary”
Northeast Region, August 14, 2013
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Lizard Hill Atlantic White Cedar Wetland
Lizard Hill Atlantic White Cedar Wetland - Photo Credit: James Hade MD State Highway Administration
Atlantic White Cedar
Atlantic White Cedar - Photo Credit: Robert H. Mohlenbrock USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database

The Federal Highway Administration recently recognized the Lizard Hill Wetland Creation Project in Worchester County, Maryland as an Exemplary Ecosystem Initiative. This award goes to ecosystem projects that are unique in their geographic scope; use cutting-edge science; attain high levels of environmental standards; achieve high-quality results; and promote environmental interest.


The focus of the Lizard Hill Wetland Creation Project was to establish a sand seepage habitat for a threatened tree species, the Atlantic white cedar, and improve water quality through the filtration of stormwater runoff to benefit the St. Martins River in Maryland.

The Atlantic white cedar requires very specific environmental conditions to thrive, including sandy seepage wetlands. The Lizard Hill site possessed the qualities necessary to replicate the cedar's natural outer coastal plain habitat.

The wetland drains about 13.6 square miles, encompassing agricultural land and state highways in both Maryland and Delaware. The 20 acres of Atlantic white cedar wetland will treat this runoff through natural filtration and uptake by the wetland vegetation. The improved water quality will also provide better conditions for fish and bottom living animals in the St. Martins River.

Partners included the US Fish and Wildlife Service’s Chesapeake Bay Field Office, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Federal Highways Administration DelMar Division, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Maryland Coastal Bays Program, Maryland Department of the Environment, Maryland State Highway Administration, Worchester County, and Biohabitats Inc.

For more information contact:
Mitch Keiler

Contact Info: Jennifer Lapis, (413) 253-8303, jennifer_lapis@fws.gov
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