The mowers have been busy in Fairport this week. The Canal Corporation has just cleared the inboard slope of the canal embankment dam between Bushnell’s Basin and 31F in Fairport.
This slope is an important part of the dam as it is somewhere that can easily be breached, causing a flood. Scrub and saplings growing here can penetrate the Rip-rap (a name for the rocks) that protect the dam from wave action. Many animals, such as muskrats, mink and otters like this environment, and will burrow into the embankment if not stopped, so its important to be able to look for their presence to prevent the water ‘piping’ through and causing a flood.
Meanwhile, at The Oxbow Trail and Park, much work has been going on. Mr Kim, of #1 Oxbow Rd, has been busy removing dead trees and branches from the bed of the original canal that run along the east side of the trail. This canal was only four feet deep and about sixteen feet wide, just enough for two original canal boats to pass.
You can see this here –
Further along the trail, we’ve mowed the entire area with a Brush Hog. This has been done to keep down the Ragweed, Phragmites grasses, Bittersweet vines and Knotweed, all invasive species.
There was a fair amount of Swamp Milkweed, the only food source for Monarch Butterfly caterpillars, but we’re told mowing actually does this plant good as its a perennial and will sprout fresh succulent growth which the caterpillars prefer this time of year.
The Oxbow mowing is the work of the Erie Canal Neighbors Association, funded entirely by the founders, and this year will cost some $600 for the season. We could do with a little help if you feel so inclined and you enjoy this beautiful shady trail. and we have a GoFundMe webpage at – https://www.gofundme.com/d2mfgs-ecna
$5 donations would be much appreciated to help us keep this trail well groomed.
ERIE CANAL NEIGHBORS ASSOCIATION. www.ecna.us