Sanctuary Apiary

Supporting over half a million bees with 11 hives and home to our Backyard Beekeeping classes, the sanctuary’s apiary is causing quite the buzz! With over 12,000 square feet of eco-type and pollinator friendly 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.

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Meadow Restoration

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 12,000 square feet of truly native 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, the results of this pioneer study will be used to affect continued preservation and conservation initiatives.

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Monarch Waystation

Housed within the sanctuary community gardens, is our official Monarch Waystation. The monarch butterfly is the only butterfly known to make a two-way migration as birds do.  Since monarchs cannot survive the cold winters of northern climates, they must travel south for the winter making them the only butterfly to make a two-way migration as birds do.  Using a combination of air currents and thermals to travel long distances, some fly as far as 3,000 miles to reach their winter home in Mexico.

To support this now engaged species, housed within the sanctuary community gardens, is a certified Monarch Watch Monarch Waystation.

By creating, conserving and protecting monarch habitats, the sanctuary is doing our part to help these beauties survive their migration and thrive in the natural world.

Learn more about Monarch Waystations by clicking the image below.

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Certified Firefly Habitat

 It is here in the darkness of the sanctuary woodlands that the fireflies call home.  By preserving the dark skies and natural surroundings, the sanctuary has been recognized as a certified firefly habitat.

By creating, conserving and protecting firefly habitats, the sanctuary is doing our part to help these magical creatures survive in the natural world.

Learn more about firefly habitat and how you can participate by clicking on the image below.