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The Manor Conservancy


  • 07/11/2020 3:50 PM | Anonymous

    This is a link to an article written by our executive director about the importance of land preservation and the local food supply.

    No land preservation, no food.

  • 20/07/2020 11:16 AM | Anonymous

    Moths and butterflies belong to the same insect family. Moths aren’t just nocturnal, less-brightly colored cousins of butterflies. First of all, they’re not all nocturnal; hummingbird moths and hawk moths are out during the day. Second of all, some moths are vividly colored, like the cinnabar moth, known for red markings on its forewings and scarlet hindwings. The garden tiger has orange hindwings with black spots. The Madagascan moon moth, also known as the comet moth, is yellow, with an 8-inch wingspan and a 6-inch tail. Other evocatively-named moths include the scarlet tiger, clouded buff, early Thorn, blood-vein, and the black witch. The white witch moth is even bigger than the comet moth, with an 11-inch wingspan. It has a zigzag pattern to make it hard to see, but the reason you’ve never seen one is more likely that it’s native to Mexico and South America. Plus it only lives a week or two.

    So how do you tell a moth from a butterfly? The easiest way is to observe them at rest. A butterfly’s wings will be closed while a moth’s will be open. Moths also have short feathery antennae; butterflies have long thin antennae (skippers are butterflies with hooked antennae). Moths also make a silky cocoon, while butterflies produce a shiny chrysalis.

    There are many more species of moths than there are butterflies, nine times as many, in fact, maybe as many as 500,000. Moths are important pollinators as well as prey; their caterpillars also provide a lot of food for birds, bats, and other critters.

    Maryland doesn’t have a state moth though many moths call Maryland home. Here’s a link to a page that shows photos of over 400 Maryland moths -

    You probably recognize the wooly bear caterpillar, an unreliable predictor of winter weather. Do you also recognize the moth it becomes, the Isabella tiger moth? 

  • 03/03/2020 12:05 PM | Anonymous

    The Manor Conservancy has just accepted an easement on a 122-acre property in Harford County. Mostly agricultural, the property includes more than 90 acres of prime and productive soils and more than 6000 feet of streams in the Deer Creek watershed.

    The owners are committed preservationists who have preserved other properties they own. "We feel lucky that our children want to farm the property. Now their children will be able to, too, if they want." A major reason to preserve land is to leave a legacy for future generations. It's wonderful to know this easement benefits not just the grantors' family but the entire community as well.

  • 03/03/2020 11:39 AM | Anonymous

    Great news - the bill that would have removed the requirement that transfer taxes in Harford County be spent on schools and land preservation was withdrawn due to opposition by the community and Harford County government.  Eternal vigilance may be the price we pay for liberty; it most certainly is the price we pay for land preservation!

  • 28/02/2020 12:28 PM | Anonymous

    The Comprehensive Zoning Map Process (CZMP) takes place every 4 years in Baltimore County. Anyone can requests changes to the zoning of any property. Requests are reviewed by the county and recommendations are made to the council with input from property owners, residents, county staff, and the Planning Board.  

    To view a list of zoning issues in District 3, please click here

    The Planning Board will meet on Thursday, March 12, at Loch Raven High School, to hear from residents. Speakers can sign up starting at 5 pm; the meeting starts at 6, and signed-in  speakers are allowed up to 2 minutes. Click here for more information about the Planning Board meeting.

    During April the Planning Board will hold public deliberation sessions; while the meetings are open to all no public comments will be taken.  In June County Council will hold public hearings - check back here and we'll let you know when dates and times have been set.

  • 14/02/2020 9:31 AM | Anonymous

    Here is the text of the letter we sent to Harford County and Baltimore County state representatives concerning HB1362, a bill that would remove the requirement that 50% of the tax on real estate transactions in Harford County be spend on land preservation and 50% be spend on schools.

    Please oppose HB1362. The bill would change how the proceeds of the transfer tax are distributed. Instead of 50% being dedicated to the county’s agricultural land preservation program and 50% dedicated to fund school site acquisition, Harford County Council would determine how to spend the money.

    Through its Rural Legacy program, the Maryland Agricultural Land Preservation Foundation, and the Maryland Environmental Trust, the state has demonstrated its commitment to land preservation and agriculture to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars. Harford County has one of the most successful county preservation programs in the state; it acts as a complement and supplement to state programs. Without Harford County’s ag program, fresh local food, clean drinking water, and greenspace will be threatened. Its strong agricultural economy will be weakened.

    Land preservation benefits the entire community. Preserved land means money that would have been spent on governmental services – like roads and schools – can be spent in higher-density areas. It is tempting but short-sighted to spend that money on other things. We have a saying in the land preservation community; “When a developer loses out on a project, she can move on to find another one. But when land that should be preserved is instead developed, it’s lost forever.”

    Please vote against HB1362.

  • 04/09/2019 3:23 PM | Anonymous

    Fall webworm caterpillars are busy feeding. Their damage is mostly cosmetic, especially on mature trees. No need to spray unless the affected tree is young and in danger of being completely defoliated. Pruning is also not necessary though you may twirl a stick in the webbing to open the nest up and expose the caterpillars to predators.

  • 26/06/2019 4:14 PM | Anonymous

    We are thrilled to announce that the Maryland Department of Natural Resources awarded us a grant to restore a part of Carroll Branch. Grants are funded through the Chesapeake and Atlantic Coastal Bays Trust Fund, the Coastal Resiliency Program, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Chesapeake Bay Program, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). We'll be working with our friends at Ecotone, Inc. on this project, which will help protect The Chesapeake Bay and increase climate resilience.

    For a full list of the projects that were funded and a map that shows their locations around Maryland, click here.

  • 04/06/2019 11:03 AM | Anonymous

    What is community solar? The Maryland Public Service Commission established regulations so that companies can build large solar installations to which members of the public can subscribe, purchasing a share of the electricity produced by the installation. Subscribers receive a credit on their BGE bill if the solar installation produces electricity. This program allows access to solar-generated electricity credits for renters or homeowners who are unable to install rooftop or ground-mounted solar.

    Agricultural land is cheap and already cleared, so as soon as Baltimore County Council passed a bill permitting large solar installations by special exception, many companies submitted applications to erect community solar installations. A few weeks ago, the Board of Appeals issued a ruling in favor of an installation at 1139 Monkton Road, the first of more than a dozen proposed projects in Councilmanic District 3 to receive a favorable decision.

    Unless the decision is appealed, the project will move forward and is scheduled to be completed before the end of 2019. The Manor Conservancy supports generating electricity through solar panels installed on brownfields, rooftops, and over parking lots. Prime and productive agricultural soils should be used to grow crops, not covered with solar panels. But it appears imminent that the first of many acres of agricultural land in District 3 will be covered with solar panels.

    We have worked with many community groups to inform the public and the administrative law judge, who issues decisions about special exceptions, about the drawbacks and pitfalls of large solar installations on agricultural land. Several projects were reduced in size, and modifications were made to fencing and landscaping to reduce the visibility of the projects. Up to ten of these projects may be built in any one councilmanic district. We hope that if and when these projects are built, they can provide solar-generated electricity to the community at reduced rates as advertised, and we will continue working to encourage acceptable alternatives to solar on prime and productive soils.

  • 02/05/2019 3:07 PM | Anonymous

    Our Calcutta was held, as always, the night before the My Lady's Manor Steeplechase Races. As our only fundraiser of the year, The Calcutta's profits, along with dues and donations, are critical to allowing The Manor Conservancy to preserve land, clean air and water. Please click here for photos of the event.

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