Pond Revitalization Project

The Conservancy has embarked upon an ambitious undertaking at our pond and adjacent spaces with a 3-Part Pond Revitalization Project. During this period some of our affected spaces will appear disheveled and under construction.

Part 1 – the Pond

  • For many years, our pond has been essentially a cesspool of algae, a breeding ground for nitrates and other contaminants, resulting in dank, green pond water.
  • The Conservancy has engaged the services of Spadefoot Design and Construction, a highly-regarded habitat restoration firm (https://spadefootny.com/), to oversee both Part 1 and Part 2 of our 3-Part Pond Project.  This is the same firm that has spearheaded other invasive remediation efforts for the Preserve, in addition to our two, recent native meadow installations.
  • Spadefoot will be connecting and maintaining a specialized pump from EnBiorganic Technologies (https://enbiorganic.com/) that uses microbiology (natural agents, as opposed to man-made chemical ones) to balance the pond water sulfite levels and thereby clarify it, without any harmful side-effects to the plants, animals and insects that ingest our pond water.
  • After approximately eight (8) weeks of treatment, our pond should be 80%-clearer and cleaner than it currently is.

Part 2 – Invasive Remediation to the NW of the Pond

  • Spadefoot is removing a variety of invasive plants (Japanese Knotweed, Porcelain Berry, English Ivy, Burning Bush, Tree of Heaven, etc.) that have over-run the 2.5-acre section of the Preserve that is bordered by the Trails 3 & 5, which lead to the beach.
  • Once these invasives are cleared, we will plant the area with a mixture of native species seeds, creating a natural, biodiverse meadow that will attract and sustain a variety of totally desirable pollinators, bees, birds, and butterflies.  We will also be planting some new, native trees in the area.
  • In addition, once the destructive invasives are removed, we will enjoy new, tremendously beautiful, unseen-in-years views of the LI Sound, Castle Gould and the pond area itself.
  • Our plan is to create new, vibrant, native pollinator and animal ecosystems — from what was previously completely void acreage, occupied almost entirely by undesirable overgrowths (pretty and green though they may have been perceived by untrained eyes).
  •  Please be assured that we thoroughly inspected the invasive-infested areas before any clearing was done, to be certain that no native species (plant or animal) would be adversely affected.
  • The ultimate uses of this new space are many:  additional picnic areas, an outdoor sculpture garden, new water-view performance/gathering greenspace.  The possibilities are truly exciting and many.
  • To learn more about Invasive Species, you can view the “Dirty Dozen” Press Conference held by

Part 3 – The Ice House

  • Though we’re not entirely clear on the history of the dilapidated building to the SE of the pond (some sort of storage space built by the Navy in the 1950’s, perhaps), it has been an eyesore and potential safety hazard for decades, the roof having caved in a couple of years ago.
  • We have demolished and removed the fallen and dangerously-loose sections of the building, leaving the concrete pad and stable wall remains.  Over the coming weeks, we plan to add a simple pergola-like roof to the structure, which moving forward, will be known as our “Ice House”.
  • Soon the space will be populated with an eclectic mix of comfy cushioned outdoor furniture, and the invasives and thorny thickets surrounding the “exterior” areas of the Ice House will be cleared, creating an inviting gathering place for visitors.  Free WiFi service is also soon to be activated in the zone.

As with any undertaking of this size and scope, there will inevitably be challenges to be faced. The Conservancy is confident that the ultimate outcome will be worth the effort for all stakeholders: the Conservancy, our members, guests, and the wildlife that live with us.