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Southeastern Massachusetts
Pine Barrens Alliance
(SEMPBA)

SEMPBA's mission: building alliances to better protect, enhance and celebrate the globally rare Southeastern Massachusetts Atlantic Coastal Pine Barrens Ecoregion.

Help Us Get Ready for
Pine Fest!

Help SEMPBA keep Pine Fest FREE and FUN by contributing to Pine Fest programming.

Pine Fest Fundraising Campaign

Please support Pine Fest!

Pine Fest Sign

SEMPBA is an all-volunteer tax-exempt organization dedicated to raising awareness about the need to preserve the globally rare Pine Barrens of southeastern Massachusetts. Your contribution to Pine Fest will help provide a full day of programs and activities that lead to greater appreciation and conservation of the local ecology.

Visit the Pine Fest 2015 pages for a list of this year's events and activities and for information on how you can participate as a vendor or conservation organization.

See you at Pine Fest!

Heidi Ricci Forum 2015

fire science field trip

2015 Southeastern Massachusetts Regional Conservation Forum

Thank you to all who participated in the second Southeastern Massachusetts Regional Conservation Forum held on February 6, 2015 and the Fire Science and Land Management Field Trip held on March 11, 2015.

Visit the 2015 Forum and Field Trip page to view photos and review information from the two-day event.

What's it going to take to preserve the Southeastern Massachusetts Atlantic Coastal Pine Barrens? It's going to take the cooperative action of us all!

What you are doing to help preserve the globally rare ecology of the southeastern Massachusetts Pine Barrens is incredibly important. But think how much more effective your efforts could be if every conservation stakeholder in the ecoregion decided to:

  • Share educational resources and outreach programs
  • Use consistent mapping technology and research and data collection techniques
  • Cooperate in identifying and planning the conservation of critical habitat and nature corridors across jurisdictional boundaries
  • Advocate for prescribed fire programs and streamlined regulations to restore forests and marshlands (wetlands benefit from fire too)
  • Seek a special designation in recognition of Massachusetts' Atlantic Coastal Pine Barrens (like the New Jersey and New York pine barrens)
  • Regularly network with federal, state, municipal agencies, businesses, schools and not-for-profit entities.

If you are interested in learning more about a Regional Conservation Partnership for the Southeastern Massachusetts Atlantic Coastal Pine Barrens Ecoregion contact SEMPBA@pinebarrensalliance.org.

Town of Plymouth ParkWatchReport

Is ParkWatchReport right for your town?
Contact sempba@pinebarrensalliance.org to learn more.

ParkWatchReport card_front

The Town of Plymouth ParkWatchReport enables all citizens to easily and accurately report problems in our parks, on beaches and on trails throughout the town. The Plymouth ParkWatchReport (PWR) site is now active and accepting reports. Register and start reporting problems you encounter in parks and along trails in Plymouth at https://plymouth.parkwatchreport.com/registration

ParkWatchReport Overview

Sponsors are needed to help the Town offset the cost of PWR. If you are a business owner and would like to advertise your business on the Town of Plymouth ParkWatchReport, please contact sempba@pinebarrensalliance.org or follow the instructions on this Sponsorship Flier.

Visit the new Ipink heartMoths webpage.

Ipink heartMoths is SEMPBA's support program for the rare moths of the southeastern Massachusetts Atlantic Coastal Pine Barrens.

Pine Barrens Natural Communities Map

The Atlantic Coastal Pine Barrens of Massachusetts extends along the shore from Duxbury to Provincetown, and includes Cape Cod, Nantucket Island, and Martha's Vineyard, with twenty-eight towns within the region.

Click here or on the map for a larger image.

Map created for SEMPBA by Paul Gregory, Management Forester, Mass. Department of Conservation and Recreation, 2013.

Atlantic Coastal Pine Barrens MapClick here or on the map to view larger image.

The Atlantic Coastal Pine Barrens is a disjunct ecoregion covering approximately 19,200 km2 (7,400 mi2) of the coastal plain of New Jersey, Long Island in New York, and Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard, Nantucket, and nearby islands in Massachusetts (fig. 1). The region has a wide variety of ecological systems, including cedar swamps, stunted pitch pine and oak forests, sphagnum bogs, coastal salt ponds, dune systems, and the nation's only maritime grassland. parts of the ecoregion represent some of the best-preserved natural habitat in the Eastern United States, other portions of the ecoregion are among the most highly developed lands in the country.

Map and text above: USGS Land Cover Trends Project: Atlantic Coastal Pine Barrens, 2000.

Southeastern Massachusetts contains the second-largest Atlantic Coastal Pine Barrens Ecoregion in the world!

Pine barrens are plant communities that occur on dry, acidic soils dominated by grasses, forbs, low shrubs, and small to medium sized pines. Here in Massachusetts, the sandy soils occur as a result of the retreat of the last glacier, called the Laurentian ice sheet, about 18,000 years ago, which left behind glacial deposits of sand and gravel 200 to 600 feet deep.

Once extending from Main to southern New Jersey, the coastal pine barrens now cover only about 10% of their former range and have become fragmented and isolated. Pine barrens in Massachusetts have lost approximately two–thirds of the signature pitch pine-scrub oak forests to development.

According to the Massachusetts Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program (NHESP), 182 threatened plant and animals species live within the Atlantic Coastal Pine Barrens of southeastern Massachusetts. Some of those species depend solely on the natural communities contained within the Pine Barrens. With only 45,000 acres protected from development, we need to do a better job of reducing the factors that are degrading the landscape and threatening biodiversity. Fire suppression, illegal off–road vehicle use, invasive plants and pests, pesticides and herbicides, and landscaping with non–native plants are taking a toll on the indigenous plants and animals.

Despite the challenges, we believe that education, cooperative action and a lot of passion can preserve and restore the beauty and unique character of southeastern Massachusetts.

Join with SEMPBA and help save an entire ecoregion!

SEMPBA Community Conservation Center
The SEMPBA Community Conservation Center 204 Long Pond Road, Plymouth, MA 02360. Your group is welcome to meet in our office. For details, drop by, email or call 774-773-9982.

Download the Town of Plymouth map of the Eel River Preserve and Russell Mill Pond Conservation Area hiking trails and the location of the SEMPBA Community Conservation Center here.

View Latest SEMPBA Newsletter

SEMPBA Brochure Cover

Read the SEMPBA Brochure Online

SEMPBA Volunteers—we'll try anything to save the pine barrens
SEMPBA Volunteers—doing all we can to save the pine barrens!

Join the effort to save the Greater Pine Barrens of Southeastern Massachusetts. Here's how!