Registered: December 2016
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In the areas surrounding Manassas National Battlefield Park, the past decade has seen over 10,000 acres of land surface become impervious due to home and business development. This change prevents water runoff from properly occurring. As such some of the Park's wildlife wetlands have been significantly impacted. To address this problem, the Park has made many efforts to perform restoration and habitat improvements at affected stream and wetland areas, but for restorations involving new plantings, these efforts have had limited success due to the over-browsing of deer. Deer have beaten down and eaten away the plantings. My project addressed this problem in the Park's wetland pond closest to the Park's Brownsville Picnic area. Under my project the wetland habitat was improved by planting native wetland plant seeds and "live stakes" and installing an eight-foot high temporary mesh fence around the area to stop deer from eating long enough for the plants to thrive. Approximately 100 wetland "live stakes" were planted and about 480 linear feet of fencing was installed.
The Manassas National Battlefield Park provided the needed materials, supplies and tools. Several meetings were held to make the list specific and to mark exactly where the Park wanted fences installed. I prepared the project schedule used to assign tasks on May 15 when the volunteer work was done.
Staff at the Manassas National Battlefield Park were very helpful. One staff member was dedicated to my project through the whole process. She was also at the site all day on May 15 and helped me retrieve and deliver all the materials, supplies and tools to the work site.
I was very thankful for all the volunteers who participated. The project site was very marshy so everyone had to be in waders because of deep water due to recent rain. Plus using pole drivers and sledge hammers to drive in the fence poles was more difficult than anticipated because of the project site's rocky ground. There was also a change in the design before the project has completed. Instead of a temporary fence around the entire wetland area, the Park staff asked that the project be redesigned to install four individual rectangles of fencing to be done with new plantings and seeds inside each rectangle. This design allowed animals to access the wetland pond.