Eddie Woodin’s generous match

Posted on Jun 17, 2016

Ray Gerbi, Eddie Woodin, Rick Frantz 2

Eddie Woodin, center, is a generous supporter of Friends of Casco Bay, and helped lead a campaign to reduce pesticide use in Scarborough and surrounding communities.

Eddie Woodin, a generous Friend of Casco Bay is offering $5,000 in matching funds toward our work to keep pollution out of the Bay, limit pesticides, and educate local residents and businesses about being good stewards of our waters.

You can help us meet the match. Simply choose Membership and note the match in the comments field.

Donate Here

What inspired Eddie’s generosity and activism? Here is Eddie’s story:

Eddie Woodin has a backyard that should be showcased on Home & Garden TV.  He has planted acres of bee-friendly flowers, nurtured trees, shrubs, and green spaces, and installed nesting boxes and bird baths to accommodate bevies of birds.  He has maintained his two-acre refuge without pesticides for 18 years.

Eddie is well known in birding circles for his knowledge of birds and his passion to protect them. He’s created a nature reserve adjacent to an abandoned gravel pit in Scarborough, Maine, a short distance from Scarborough Marsh. Covering more than 3,200 acres, Scarborough Marsh is the largest contiguous salt marsh system in Maine.  The marsh is a stopover for migrating birds on the Atlantic Flyway.

One afternoon nearly 10 years ago, Eddie was sitting on a bench in his yard at dusk. He noticed that there were none of the brown bats that normally dive bombed clouds of mosquitoes at that time of day. Then he realized there were no mosquitoes either.

Soon after, Eddie saw that a pair of adult tree swallows had abandoned their nest, leaving their chicks to starve. Tree swallows are aerial feeders, catching mosquitoes, flies, and gnats on the wing.  There were no insects around to feed their young.

Within the space of a few weeks, Eddie received eight solicitations for chemical lawn care services. He threw them all away, but he began to wonder, what were other homeowners doing with these ads?

Friends of Casco Bay shared data collected by the Maine Board of Pesticides Control that showed that over 6 million pounds of pesticides were brought into the state for sale for residential use in 2007, up from less than a million pounds 12 years earlier. That was a frightening call to action.

Education alone has not succeeded in significantly reducing the amount of pesticides intended for home use.

Education alone has not succeeded in significantly reducing
the amount of pesticides intended for home use.

Thus began a crusade.

On September 21, 2011, thanks to Eddie’s advocacy, Scarborough passed its Pest Management Policy, which effectively banned the use of synthetic lawn chemicals on public fields.

In 2012, The Town of Scarborough nominated Eddie Woodin for Eco-Maine’s eco-Excellence Award, which recognizes community activists who lead by example. The Town of Scarborough recognized Eddie for his commitment and outreach efforts to protect the environment.

“For years,” the Town said in its nomination, “Eddie Woodin has invited the public to his home for tours of his property to promote landscaping for birds, insects, and other wildlife without the use of chemicals. Most recently, Eddie helped to form a group called Citizens for a Green Scarborough, which proposed a new pesticide policy for town-owned land – including parks and school playgrounds. This group organized public outreach events to educate Scarborough residents about the problems with the use of chemical pesticides and herbicides, including their effects on wildlife, people, and pets. Eddie’s advocacy culminated with the Scarborough Town Council adopting a policy restricting the use of synthetic pesticides and herbicides on town-owned land in September of 2011.”

Eddie is committed to spending the rest of his life fighting the use of pesticides.

You can help us meet the match.

Donate here