Well-vegetated open space along the Presumpscot River provides several critical functions to the wildlife and human communities within the watershed, including:
Habitat for fish and wildlife: A wild corridor along the river provides critical habitat to both land- and water-based wildlife, including birds, deer, fish, and a number of threatened and endangered species of frogs and salamanders in Maine.
Plant habitat: Riparian land has rich, moist soil where different types of plant communities thrive. At least two threatened or endangered plant species have been observed in the riparian corridor along the Presumpscot River.
Flood protection: Open space along a river helps to mitigate the effects of flooding by allowing the water to spread out.
Historical and archaeological resources: The riparian corridor along the Presumpscot River has a rich history of Native American and early industrial uses, including gunpowder mills and historic canals.
Farming: Agriculture is an important contributor to open space along the river. Crops flourish in the fertile riparian soils.
Recreation: Boating, fishing, hunting, swimming, and hiking are among the many ways people enjoy the Presumpscot River today. For more information on recreation opportunities along the river, see the Presumpscot River Guide.
Today, the riparian corridor along the Presumpscot River is dominated by open space: more than 80% remains undeveloped. As industrial demands on the river are decreasing, however, development pressures are steadily increasing. River stakeholders are ramping up efforts to maintain the integrity of the riparian corridor through land preservation, enhancing public recreation lands, working with communities to develop zoning regulations, and working with individual land-owners to create easements along the river.
For more information on open space in the Presumpscot River, see the following documents related related to "Protecting and Enhancing Open Space Along the Presumpscot River":
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