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Delaware volunteers collect bumper crop of acorns to restore wildlife habitat

From the  Delaware Division of Fish and Wildlife 
 
-- At the Division of Fish and Wildlife’s Annual Acorn Collection Day, 91 volunteers joined with agency biologists to collect more than 790 pounds of acorns that will be scattered in reforestation areas or transplanted on public and private lands to establish new wildlife habitat. In addition, more than 400 pounds were collected by landowners on their properties and donated to the Division’s reforestation program – the Landowner Incentive Program.
 
“This was a bumper crop of acorns, and we had a great turnout of volunteers to assist with the collection,” said Lynne Staub, Division of Fish and Wildlife coordinator for the event. “Between collection day volunteers and landowner donations, this year’s collection was a great success with a final count of 1,191 pounds of acorns. The oak trees produced from these acorns will expand wooded areas and provide valuable habitat – food and shelter – for many native wildlife species.”
 
This year marked the Division of Fish and Wildlife’s fifth annual event with more than 2,300 pounds of acorns collected since the event was introduced in 2005.
 
This year’s collection day was made possible by volunteer support of people from throughout the state and by assistance from DNREC’s Division of Parks and Recreation – Lums Pond and Trap Pond State Parks – and DelDOT – Smyrna Rest Area – for the collection sites.  
 
Volunteers collected acorns from areas at each site where seedlings would not generally be able to grow, including mowed areas along trail edges, open spaces and roadsides. The acorns will be scattered in reforestation areas to grow on their own, or with the help of program partners, grown into oak seedlings that will be transplanted on both public and private lands throughout the state.
 
This year, more than 400 pounds of acorns were donated by landowners, including Betty Ann Cooper, who collected 150 pounds on her property in Frederica and donated the acorns to the Division of Fish and Wildlife for the program.
 
For more information on the Division of Fish and Wildlife’s Landowner Incentive Program, visit
www.fw.delaware.gov/dplap or contact Lynne Staub, (302) 735-3600 or Lynne.Staub@state.de.us

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