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Little fuzzball on Squantum beach

Baby plover

Mary Ellen spotted the baby plover at Squantum the other day.



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These 'little fuzzballs' are the latest reason the Curley Community Center (L Street Bathhouse) in South Boston hasn't opened yet.
The building just went under a total rebuild and has been closed for over two years. Maybe you can do some digging and find out what, when and how this facility will reopen!

Voting closed 14

to open but keep the beach part closed. Also it might be a noise thing.

Voting closed 10

The Piping Plover is deemed an endangered species. When found the US Fish & Wildlife service takes over, regardless of land ownership, and will close beaches where they are nesting, which is usually in or near the edge of any dunes. Various townships have lost beach access in the past as well as a prohibition of July 4th fireworks at traditional beach sites.

The problem is that USFWS has almost total authority and operates under the auspices of Congress, so any changes require that same act of Congress that created the department.

Unfortunately, in some areas the USFWS has not been straight-forward with people. Back in the 80s they closed one or more beaches operated by townships with a caveat that as soon as the nesting population improved, and to a specified published number, the beaches would re-open to public access. Then, in subsequent years when a review of the policy came about, they would raise the number of nesting pairs higher, and did that for many years in a row. In the end the closed town beach had to purchase an alternate site for its citizenry.

If the Piping Plover has been seen in that area, the feds will close the beach. They would allow the fenced areas behind the Curley to operate, but likely close anything within a specified linear footage from the last nest located.

Oddly, and maybe not so, the Piping Plover was initially only on a list as specifically "endangered" in the Great Lakes region. The ones that populate the North Atlantic area which extends from Rachel Carson preserve in Maine, to the Chincoteague reserve in MD, were only deemed "threatened." This is a slightly less designation on the endangered list and often mandates some kind of a specific management plan.

At Crane's Beach for example a management plan to protect individual nests was implemented some years back and that worked well. However, federal lands take the stance that nature needs to take its course, and full closure to human access is their management plan.

The Plover nesting season ranges approximately from mid-March to early September, so if any beach is closed for the bird, you can kiss off the beach.

You have to wonder if there is a better plan to help the species and if the USFWS will ever take that bird off their protection list in our lifetime given the shenanigans they have been pulling for over a quarter of a century with this topic.

Voting closed 12

Mmmm dinner. Magoo.

Voting closed 11