Nature preserve gets facelift after Florence

Ev-Henwood nature preserve cleanup underway

LELAND, NC (WECT) - Many people are still recovering from Hurricane Florence, and the storm didn’t just take a toll on homes. It also hit nature preserves. Two groups teamed up to clean up the Ev-Henwood Nature Preserve Sunday.

The Ev-Henwood Nature Preserve felt the force of Hurricane Florence. Trees were uprooted, and it’s almost impossible to get from one area to another. Volunteers said this has caused a rise in safety concerns since the hurricane.

The property is owned by UNCW and is used for classes and research studies. AmeriCorps and UNCW partnered to help clean the preserve and the trails.

“I think having spaces to come out and appreciate and enjoy nature while learning is really big. So, somebody’s got to make sure that you can walk down the actual trail, Lillie Reiter, an AmeriCorps member, said.

AmeriCorps members, UNCW students and professors and other volunteers used rakes, shovels and even a chainsaw to move fallen debris.

They also planted 100 Longleaf Pine trees planted. The flooding from the hurricane washed away and uprooted the ones that were there for a while. AmeriCorps and UNCW volunteers said it was time to revitalize the area.

“This place is very special to a number of different people who have grown up hiking around here, visiting these trails regularly so after Florence there was a lot of work to get it back," Monica Rother, a UNCW Assistant Professor, said.

Plans have been made for a company to come out and remove the heavier trees that volunteers weren’t able to move.

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