Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service website

Some of the Chesapeake Bay’s pristine wildlife refuges are drowning, casualties of erosion and the rising waters caused by climate change. Now, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is using superstorm Sandy money and the latest science to restore and protect two of Maryland’s prized refuges.  Pamela D'Angelo reports.

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Federal officials say Maryland has been awarded more than $7 million in grants for projects to protect communities against damage from future storms.

The U.S. Department of the Interior's Hurricane Sandy Coastal Resilience Grant Program announced the grants to 11 states in the eastern U.S. on Monday.

The largest grant was $3.5 million to create 25 acres of new salt marsh and increase salt marsh productivity at Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge and Fishing Bay Wildlife Management Area in Dorchester County.

Creative Commons Wikimedia

The numbers are declining and efforts to remove the invasive rodents called Nutria in the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge is making significant progress.

But, Bill Wilmoth, assistant director of the Eradication Project, says it is getting more difficult finding the last of the population.

WBOC reports that almost 14-thousand have been removed in the last 11 years and 63 were found in the park last year.

Don Rush

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The National Park Service has chosen a superintendent for the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National monument.

Cherie Butler was named the monument's first superintendent on Wednesday. She has been serving as the monument's acting superintendent since March of this year, when President Barack Obama established the monument.

The new monument is located on Maryland's Eastern Shore. It includes large sections of landscapes that are significant to Tubman's early life in Dorchester County.

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Interior Secretary Ken Salazar came to Cambridge yesterday to celebrate the decision by President Obama to establish a monument Harriet Tubman who lead hundreds of slaves to freedom before the Civil War.

The monument was cover 480 acres next to the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge that has been donated by The Conservation Fund.

The President designated the land for the monument under the Antiquities Act.