Southwest CDC staff spent September 1st at a staff retreat at John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge, where there is 1,000 acres of marshland at the base of the Darby Creek. The remnants of Hurricane Ida stayed away while the thirteen full time employees enjoyed a tour of the refuge as part of their day. More than half of the attendees had never visited the refuge before.
“Celebrated as America’s First Urban Refuge, John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge at Tinicum was established in 1972 for the purposes of preserving, restoring, and developing the natural area known as Tinicum Marsh. In addition, the refuge was established to provide environmental education and an opportunity to study nature.” states the refuge website. It continues with “The refuge is a treasured green space nestled within the city of Philadelphia, teeming with a rich diversity of fish, wildlife, and plants native to the Delaware Estuary. The refuge supports a diversity of habitats, including freshwater tidal marsh, open waters, mudflats, and woodlands that the hundreds of species call home.”
The refuge is at 8601 Lindbergh Boulevard, right in Southwest Philadelphia. They are open to the public from dawn till dusk. It’s a great place to bird watch, fish, run, walk and walk your dog (on a leash).