Supporting over 40,000 bees and home to our Backyard Beekeeping classes, the sanctuary’s apiary is causing quite the buzz! With over 8,400 square feet of eco-type pollinator plants growing in the sanctuary gardens, we’ve created an optimum environment for their success and well-being. Whether teaching budding beekeepers or educating the community about protecting and nurturing these special creatures, the sanctuary’s apiary is making a difference to our most fragile pollinators.
The sanctuary’s 34-acre property once served as farmland to support the patients and residents of Fairfield State Hospital. Having sat untouched for nineteen years, the once sweeping meadows became entangled with invasive plants and encroached by woodlands. Upon the sanctuary receiving the property in 2014, our focus was on restoring the land to its original grandeur. To date, we’ve created 5,000 square feet of pollinator habitat and restored two of the four-acre meadows.
The sanctuary’s meadow restoration efforts are also the focal point of a research study seeking to understand restoration effort’s impact on entomological biodiversity – a key indicator in the environmental health of an ecosystem. Spearheaded by Dr. Rayda Krell of Western Connecticut State University, the results of this pioneer study will be used to affect continued preservation and conservation initiatives.