This year marks the 25th anniversary of Loudoun Wildlife’s community partnership with the Dulles Greenway. In 1996 Toll Road Investors Partnership II (TRIP II), the Dulles Greenway’s parent company, established a private 149-acre wetlands preserve in Leesburg during the construction of the Dulles Greenway roadway to mitigate the loss of roughly 64 acres of federally protected wetlands. This mitigation provided a 2:1 replacement ratio for forested wetlands, and a 1.5:1 replacement ratio for emergent wetlands. The Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy has provided stewardship of the Dulles Greenway Wetlands since 1996.
The Dulles Greenway Wetlands are home to numerous rare and unique species, and with the charitable contributions of the Dulles Greenway — over $535,000 in the past 25 years — Loudoun Wildlife has been able to use the property for local wildlife education. These funds have contributed to our goals of supporting citizen science and habitat conservation, and we’ve been able to host more than 90 educational programs and field trips that engaged over 2,400 people from around the area annually.
Many of the rare bird species recorded in the Birds of Loudoun: A Guide Based on the 2009-2014 Loudoun County Bird Atlas were found almost exclusively at the Dulles Greenway Wetlands. In fact, 158 bird species were recorded on the Dulles Greenway Wetlands, including Great Blue Herons, American Egrets, Green Herons, Mallards, Black Ducks, Green-winged Teals, Red-tailed Hawks, Wilson’s Snipe, sandpipers, nesting Bald Eagles, and numerous species that are rare to Loudoun County. The site also hosts a variety of other wildlife, including red foxes, deer, beavers, river otters, painted turtles, snapping turtles, and box turtles.
“We are grateful for the instrumental support of the Dulles Greenway over the past 25 years and excited about continuing our partnership with them to support the local wildlife and habitats in the Dulles Greenway Wetlands,” Loudoun Wildlife Executive Director Michael Myers said.