Increasing Use and Knowledge of Lancaster County's Natural Reserves
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Spending time outdoors is beneficial to adults and children. However, in recent years, fewer people have been spending time outside. In our local Pennsylvania community, the Lancaster County Conservancy (LCC) offers opportunities for adults and children to explore the outdoors, yet, many of their properties are underutilized. We administered surveys that showed individuals are more inclined to visit the reserves if they know more about the reserves' wildlife. In an attempt to gather information about faunal species found on LCC properties, we conducted a biodiversity study of many reserves. Data was collected from cameras that have been in the parks periodically over the last several years and from online databases. We learned that lack of transportation and limited knowledge of LCC properties were factors preventing people from utilizing the reserves. Subsequently, in an effort to encourage their use, F&M has agreed to host trips to the reserves and to create a website and database where people can find out more about fauna at LCC properties. This project was made possible by funding from F&M's Hackman Summer Scholars and The Center for the Sustainable Environment.
Poster presented at the 2016 Autumn Research Fair at Franklin and Marshall College