Conservation restriction for Headwaters Bog will preserve wildlife, water quality

Aug 2, 2022

ROCHESTER – A conservation restriction to a four-acre property off Burgess Avenue, often referred to “Headwaters Bog,” will preserve the area and allow public access, as approved by the Select Board on Monday, Aug. 1.

Alan Decker from the Buzzards Bay Coalition and Matt Montero from the Rochester Land Trust visited the Select Board to present their intentions with the property.

“We don’t intend to do anything commercial with (the property),” Decker said. “We are hoping to maintain some social trails, formalize them, and connect them to other conservation land.”

The Coalition also owns the Stewart Bog property in Rochester, and connecting the properties gives them “additional frontage” on Walnut Plain Road.

Decker also spoke about a small cranberry bog located on the property, where he said they may use it for demonstrations, let it go wild, or maintain it and create a “you pick” option for the public.

He also said that the Coalition is looking into adding a parking lot to Headwaters Bog, “for ease of public access.”

The property has habitat benefits to it, said Decker, and it is mapped as a critical natural landscape and core habitat by The Natural Heritage & Endangered Species Program of the state.

The conservation restriction itself states that species like the Eastern Box Turtle and Four-toed Salamander are documented on the premises and use the property as a habitat.

In addition, the restriction mandates the maintaining the water quality, and that the restoration of the premises will “prevent further degradation of water quality downstream.”

The Select Board unanimously approved and signed the restriction for the property.