The mission of the Wildfowl Trust of North America, Inc. (WTNA) and its physical site, the Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center, is to promote stewardship and sustainability through environmental education and habitat restoration.
The WTNA. was founded in 1979 as a direct response to the dwindling waterfowl population of the Chesapeake Bay. In 1981, the Trust purchased 315 acres in Grasonville, Maryland, on which it built the Horsehead Wetlands Center. In 1999 the Trust purchased an additional 195 adjoining acres and placed the total acreage under conservation easements with the Maryland Environmental Trust, insuring that 510 acres of Maryland’s pristine wetlands will be preserved as natural habitat for future generations of Maryland’s residents to enjoy. Four miles of land trails, canoe/kayak trails, two observation towers, two concealed observation blinds, and marsh boardwalks currently provide visitor’s access to the varied habitats that are vital to the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem.
Demonstration gardens, backyard habitats and a constructed wetland enable school groups and visitors to learn techniques and designs to enhance habitat on their own property. The Visitor’s Center, education building, screened lakeside pavilion and main exhibit area including a collection of non-releasable raptors, are open to the public throughout the year.
In 2002 the Horsehead Wetlands Center was renamed and became the Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center (CBEC). The Center developed its programs and exhibits to serve the general public statewide and to educate the region’s residents to appreciate the unique natural environment of the Chesapeake Bay, in particular wetlands and wildlife that inhabit them. The Trust developed a vigorous education program for children and adults and is addressing the curricular needs of Maryland’s students. The resident raptors and natural flocks of waterfowl inhabiting the peninsula’s shores have become genuine ambassadors for their species and wetlands education. The resident raptors frequently accompany the staff to schools and community events.
From 2002 through present CBEC has been actively involved in Bay restoration. As a result of Bay restoration as a vision and partnering with agencies, organizations and foundations a number of on-site demonstration projects have been completed with several additional projects on-going.
(The above text is largely borrowed from the CBEC website.)
Over the years, the CBEC staff have been very open to geocaching. Local cacher, Mother Wolf, has worked as a liaison between CBEC, the Military Association of GeoCachers (MAGC), and the general caching community for the benefit of all, including service events and overnight camping events. There are a number of active caches on the grounds. Hopefully, this will soon include some physical OCUS hides, as well.
In order to claim this cache, be sure to sign the guest book inside the Visitor's Center and post a photo of your visit. Of course, I'd also love to see your thoughts on your visit, as well.
CBEC is a private, non-profit, open to the public. Visitors please check in at the Visitor Center, , 7 days a week. Admission cost is $5/adults, $4/seniors, and $2/youth. No pets allowed, except for dogs with a paid membership ($20/year). Please obey all posted signs and stay on trail as much as possible. More information at: www.bayrestoration.org.