By Troy Bishopp
Owego, N.Y. – You may identify with a buffer as an antacid, a car polisher or cows eating hay before going on lush pasture, and you’d be right. In rural America, buffers are also an integral part of protecting and preserving water quality on the land and at the streamside. Jacques Cousteau said, “We forget that the water cycle and the life cycle are one”.
The Upper Susquehanna Coalition strives to create and enhance a “wall to wall” buffer
Lydia Brinkley surveys a 4 year old USC riparian buffer in the Otselic River Watershed
program that respects the water/life cycle using an integrative, multiple barrier approach with its agriculture team, stream team and award-winning wetland team. To bolster efforts to improve water quality and natural resources and work with landowners and communities in the Upper Susquehanna River Basin, the 19 Soil and Water Conservation Districts of the USC are pleased to introduce Lydia Brinkley as their new Buffer Coordinator.
Ms. Brinkley and the USC have partnered with The U.S Forest Service and The Natural Resources Conservation Service in a Joint Chiefs Landscape
Lydia points out Caddisfly cases from under rocks in a stream which are an indicator of good water quality.
Restoration Initiative to improve the health and resiliency of large scale landscapes and priority forested watersheds. The goal is to add riparian forested buffer corridors and seek innovative ways to implement practical conservation measures on the ground.
Lydia holds a Master of Science degree in Forest and Natural Resources Management from the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry where she performed research in the Skaneateles Lake Watershed, as well as on the aquatic insect composition of watershed streams dominated by agriculture and forest. Lydia has experience as an environmental consultant, teaching college level science courses, and developing and delivering educational and conservation management strategies to landowners and communities.
She is looking forward to engaging with farmers and Upper Susquehanna River stakeholders, promoting common sense practices that are economically feasible, putting projects on the ground and playing a role in the enhancement of water quality ,soil health, riparian habitat and some good fishing spots.
Wendy Walsh, USC Watershed Coordinator and Tioga County SWCD District Manager said, “We appreciate Lydia’s passion and boots in the stream attitude to create more practical, riparian buffer acres that will protect our watershed for future generations. She is an asset to our rural community”.
If you have a potential riparian buffer site or have an area on your farm where you need some technical help and site development help, contact Lydia Brinkley at firstname.lastname@example.org or (315) 525-5872 and visit U-S-C.org for more water quality initiatives.
This article originally featured in County Folks Eastern Edition