The Martha’s Vineyard Habitat Network

No matter the size of your lot or where it’s located, the Vineyard Habitat Network can help you to better support biodiversity and build resilience into our Island ecosystems.
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NEW! Interactive "Ecological Neighborhoods” Map of Martha's Vineyard. This map shows different eco-zones found on the island. It also displays the locations of VHN partner properties and in some cases, photographs and written descriptions of habitat management projects and other notable features. Enjoy exploring!

Vineyard Gazette: Explore more tips and stories about the Vineyard Habitat Network through our new partnership with the Vineyard Gazette!

Five Simple Strategies for Cultivating a Backyard Habitat from the Vineyard Habitat Network

Join us for coming events with the Vineyard Habitat Network

Dear Martha’s Vineyard Neighbor:

Instead of viewing people and houses as a threat to nature, what happens when we look at residential land as potentially useful to nature?

Our science tells us that some small changes in how properties are managed can enhance populations of desirable wildlife, reduce the strain on our ponds and bays, offer new resources to migratory species and turn barriers into bridges for wildlife seeking to move around Martha’s Vineyard.

No matter the size of your lot or where it’s located, the Vineyard Habitat Network can help you to better support biodiversity and build resilience into our Island ecosystems. Our goal is to provide guidance and inspiration to landowners who wish to enrich their own lives through hands-on stewardship of the Vineyard’s unique natural heritage.

The human landscape doesn’t have to be a threat. We can make areas used by people part of a healthier future by pairing big-picture conservation science with individual action, one backyard at a time.

To get started today, contact
Matt Pelikan
(508) 693-6287

► See the Vineyard Habitat Network's new fact sheets for species accounts and how-to strategies!

See the Vineyard Habitat Network's Summer 2013 newsletter!

Good for Nature, Good for You

Is your property a model of sustainable landscaping or wildlife management? Don’t let it go unnoticed!

Register with the Vineyard Habitat Network to connect with others and share your solutions for safeguarding backyard wildlife.

You’ll join a growing community of like-minded conservationists with all the best interests of Martha’s Vineyard at heart.

Have fun. Engage the whole family. Make a difference.

Sink or Source?

Suburban landscapes, fragmented by roads and buildings, are full of small, isolated pockets of low-quality habitat. Animals and seeds can enter these patches but can’t survive, grow, or reproduce successfully in them. Eventually such suburban “sinks” drain biodiversity from neighboring wild areas, and the health and distinctiveness of the local ecosystem declines. Weeds and pests begin to occupy niches left vacant by disappearing native species.

With a few simple improvements to your backyard, you can help reconnect the Vineyard’s ancient mosaic of productive source habitats—those places in the landscape where native wildlife thrives. Make your property a safe haven for biodiversity. Inspire your neighbors to do the same, and together we can overcome the effects of habitat fragmentation.

Work with What You’ve Got

If there’s a wildflower still residing on your land or neighborhood, it’s probably there for a reason: It’s a good survivor in that spot. Make it your ecological foundation, and expand from there by providing or enhancing those specific resources that best suit your property.

Diverse natural communities are more resilient to threats like climate change and invasive species. But any species or habitat is more likely to flourish when you take an active interest in it!

The Martha’s Vineyard Habitat Network is a free resource for the entire Island community.

We’re Here to Help

Providing the right kind of food, water, and shelter for native wildlife means finding a balance between what’s important to you and what’s suitable for your land.

  • Identify your property’s ecologically valuable features.
  • Learn about the wildlife using your property.
  • Determine what species to manage for.
  • Develop a wildlife-friendly landscape plan.
  • Share your success! 


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