Field Notes
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Field Notes Entry   
Donation Supports Learning on Nutria Eradication Program
Northeast Region, January 20, 2005
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The Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge (Md.) recently received a professionally mounted nutria from the Maryland Nutria Project. The donation was made to the refuge through its membership in the Eastern Shore Nutria Education Consortium. Each of the 12 member organizations in the consortium has received a mounted nutria for display in nature centers and use in area schools to help teach about the problems nutria cause in the Chesapeake Bay.

The consortium is an informal partnership of 12 area environmental education providers. In partnership with federal, state, and private organizations associated with the Maryland Nutria Project, the members of the consortium are developing educational and outreach materials focused on nutria.

Since its introduction into the area during the 1940s, the nutria has contributed to the destruction of 7,000 acres of wetland on the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge. To date, the Maryland Nutria Project has removed over 8,600 nutria from 36,000 acres of public and private marshland on Maryland's Delmarva Peninsula.

The goal of the project, led by the Service's Chesapeake Bay Field Office and the Chesapeake Marshlands National Wildlife Refuge Complex, is to eradicate this non-native rodent from the Chesapeake and Delaware bays. The Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge is a unit of the refuge complex.

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