The boxes will be placed around the pond at Heron Park to attract wildlife and visitors alike!
On Monday, the Town of Berlin in Maryland unanimously passed a project to build duck boxes at Heron Park. And it took a young boy's passion for bird-watching to make it happen!
The Maryland Coast Dispatch recently reported that 11-year-old Ewan Betz proposed the project during a meeting with town officials. An "avid birder" and member of Worcester County's 4-H club, the boy was inspired to install the boxes after building some with his father.
He told the council, “I love birding at Heron Park because it is near my house and wood ducks are beautiful creatures and we could attract more of them to the park."
According to Betz, the boxes would be constructed out of cedar and placed on wooden planks near the pond. There would be about two to three boxes total which would be cleaned regularly and made of high-quality materials to ensure longevity. He's even sought expertise from local birder Dave Wilson to decide on optimal locations for placing the boxes.
Formerly known as Berlin Falls Park, Heron Park is a recreational park with vast ecological diversity. It harbors almost 200 bird species, with 26 of them consisting of wintering waterfowl, like Wood Ducks and Mallards. Since debuting in 2016, the 62-acre park has become a welcome spot for bird-watchers and walkers, so it only makes sense that Betz's idea would take off!
In addition to drawing more wildlife, the plan would work two-fold in tourism outreach. Mayor Zack Tyndall praised Betz's point that increased foot traffic to the park would result in more people visiting nearby shops and restaurants, a boom for the local economy.
Despite not having direct input from the Berlin Parks Commission, council officials were confident the project would receive their stamp of approval, so it's only a matter of time before the boxes appear in the park. Good job, Ewan!
Have you visited Heron Park before? What kind of activities do you like to do? Let us know in the comments.