Field Notes
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Field Notes Entry   
1,400 Acres Protected for the Endangered Delmarva Fox Squirrel
Northeast Region, December 31, 2007
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In December 2007, a partnership including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Eastern Shore Land Conservancy, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, and The Nature Conservancy purchased a conservation easement on the 1,429-acre Good Luck Farms property in Dorchester County, Maryland. This provides perpetual protection to important forest habitat for the Federally-endangered Delmarva fox squirrel and migratory birds, including nesting bald eagles. The property, located in the Nanticoke - Blackwater River watershed, contains a large block of coastal plain forest with documented fox squirrel populations. 


Historically, the Delmarva fox squirrel roamed the coastal plain forests of Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia into southeastern Pennsylvania and west central New Jersey. Decades of forest clearing and land use reduced the squirrel's range 90 percent by 1967, when the subspecies was placed on the Federal Endangered Species List. At that time, populations remained in only four Maryland counties on the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake Bay. Habitat loss and fragmentation from development, incompatible timbering, and agriculture continue to threaten the species' recovery. 


Protection of this property is critical to the partnership's efforts to stabilize fox squirrel populations in core forest areas in order to remove the species from the endangered species list. The protection of these 1,429 contiguous acres advances that goal significantly and, at a larger landscape-level, is an important link in the public/private effort to protect and connect core refuge areas throughout both Maryland and Delaware.


For more information, contact:
Dan Murphy

Chesapeake Bay Field Office

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

177 Admiral Cochrane Drive

Annapolis MD 21401



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