Osprey Platform Dedicated at Helen Wood Park

Conservancy Partners With Local Citizens and Organizations to Build a Better Relationship With Nature

Mobile, AL | April 11, 2012

The Nature Conservancy in Alabama will dedicate a new osprey platform deployed in Helen Wood Park in memory of the late Max Harman of Huntsville on Friday, April 13 at 11 am. The construction of the platform was made possible through the Boy Scouts in Mobile, Alabama, which made it even more special to Max’s wife, Linda Harman.

“Not only was Max an avid naturalist, but he was a teacher to all he met. Max was a long-time Scoutmaster and helped many young men achieve the rank of Eagle Scout, including our son, Hill Harman. Together, their troop worked on similar projects – building wood duck boxes and restoring trails. He would be very honored by this memorial,” Linda said.

This dedication is part of a larger stormwater demonstration project taking place at the park that same day. Mobile Baykeeper provided funding for this project through the help of Mobile Area Water and Sewer System (MAWSS). Volunteers from local students, corporations, federal and state agencies, and local environmental non-profits will join 100-1000: Restore Coastal Alabama partners, led by the Alabama Coastal Foundation, The Nature Conservancy, Mobile Baykeeper and The Ocean Foundation, to plant an oak chenier, install an educational sign and handle general cleanup of the park.

Linda Harman and a friend made special plans to volunteer their time prior to the dedication.

“I am excited about helping a place I love. My friend is from Dauphin Island and is also excited to be giving something back to her ‘hometown,’ ” Linda said.

Osprey (Pandion haliaetus) are large, birds of prey that live many places around the world throughout coastal areas, rivers, lakes and other large bodies of water. Since osprey are at the top of the food chain, their health and proliferation reflects the same of the coastal areas in which it inhabits. Ospreys often establish nests on channel markers, utility poles, and windmills, which can create nuisances for humans and osprey alike. The installation and presence of specifically designed osprey platforms, like the one deployed and dedicated in Helen Wood Park, provide a stable base for nests while assisting with the survival of this very important indicator species.

The Nature Conservancy in Alabama, in partnership with the Alabama Coastal Foundation, and with funding provided in part by EarthShare, installed an osprey platform at the Helen Wood Park living shoreline project site in Mobile Bay, Alabama. Special thanks to the Alabama Coastal Foundation, who donated the platform and commissioned its construction through the Boy Scouts in Mobile, Alabama and to the Mobile Botanical Gardens for their instrumental participation with the much-needed planting for Helen Wood Park.

The Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world's toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at unprecedented scale, and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in more than 65 countries, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit www.nature.org or follow @nature_press on Twitter.

Contact information

Natalie Garcia
The Nature Conservancy in Alabama
205 251 1155, ext 107


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