Holderness Conservation Commission

Holderness, NH 03245


15 November 2006




Ms. Jocelyn Degler

Department of Environmental Services

Wetlands Bureau

6 Hazen Drive  PO Box 95

Concord, NH  03302-0095


Dear Ms. Degler,


The Holderness Conservation Commission is aware of the Dredge and Fill Application submitted by Rollin and Paula Reynolds to impact 7531 sq. ft. of wetland and open water around Owl Brook near the junction of Perch Pond Rd. and Beede Rd. in Holderness.  The DES File number is 061102-02


This area is recognized by the Town of Holderness as a seasonally flooded area (as many as six times per year) and an important groundwater recharge area.  The area is within the Squam Lake watershed and within view of two designated scenic roads (Perch Pond and Beede).


Recently a Blanding’s turtle was discovered in the area of the proposed project.  This turtle was identified by NH Dept. of Fish and Game.   The finding is noted to be the northernmost sighting of this species in New Hampshire.  Blanding’s turtles are rare and currently endangered in some northern states.  Their preferred habitat is a wetland with standing water.   The primary threat to this rare species is fragmentation or complete loss of habitat.  Area residents report a vernal pool in the area of the proposed excavation.  On the maps prepared for the Town by the Lakes Region Planning Commission the Co-occurrence values in this area are high. 


The Reynolds’ application addresses only a small portion of the overall wetland and does not consider the impact on the wetland as a whole or areas downstream.  The Commission believes that filling in part of this wetland will result in increased flooding in the rest of the area and damage downstream.


The Holderness Conservation Commission, on reviewing this application, requests that the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services refuse to issue a permit.


On behalf of the commission,




Larry T. Spencer, Chair


cc: Members, Holderness Conservation Commission; Earl Hansen, Chair, Planning Board; Board of Selectmen