Falk Announces McCarthy Park Wetlands Restoration Project
August 18, 2005
Lesley Sillaman, Office of the County Executive (608) 267-8823 or cell (608) 669-5606
Sun Prairie – Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk announced today that Dane County has received a $15,000 U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) grant to restore 25 acres of wetlands at the McCarthy County Park near Sun Prairie.
“The restoration of these wetlands will improve wildlife habitat and reduce flooding. I’m very grateful for funding and technical expertise offered by the US Fish & Wildlife Service,” said Falk. “I am also glad that we were able to re-use the pulp from the box elder trees by trucking it to a mill in Port Edwards that makes paper for books.”
The restored wetland will be a home to waterfowl and shorebirds, aquatic insects such as dragonflies, and amphibians such as frogs, toads, and salamanders. The nearby uplands are being planted to native species and will provide nesting habitat, food, and cover for grassland birds and mammals.
The wetlands restoration will also aid in easing flooding problems in the area. Prior to this restoration, waters reaching McCarthy Park were drained away in ditches that emptied into the Koshkonong Creek and Lake Koshkonong. Now the water will be held within the wetlands of McCarthy Park, thus easing flooding and bank erosion problems around the Koshkonong Creek.
"It is my hope that this restoration project is only the beginning,” said Parks Commission member and County Board Supervisor representing Sun Prairie, Jeff Kostelic. “This is a great example of how a park improvement project can serve the greater Dane County community by protecting ground water and preventing run-off."
Contributions of native seed came in from several sources, but primarily through the volunteer efforts of the Dane County Conservation Team volunteers. Volunteers provided almost 40 species of native seed. The USFWS provided the remaining native seed, some collected from uncommon plants. The Friends of McCarthy Park played a vital role in seeding the fields.
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