A Letter from Board Chair Nancy Dempze

Dear Friends of Manomet,

In August 2019, we launched our celebration of Manomet’s 50th anniversary—an historic milestone made possible by the generosity and dedication of our donors. Much has changed since August 4, 1969, when a single paid staff member and a band of volunteers opened the doors of the Manomet Bird Observatory for the first time. But what has not changed is our unwavering commitment to using science to better our world.

Whether we’re collecting migration data, working to recover shorebirds and protect their habitats, preparing forests to adapt to climate change, or any of our other initiatives stretching across the Western Hemisphere, Manomet is first and foremost a science-based organization.

But, we learned a long time ago that the challenges we face today are just too big to solve alone. If we’re going to mitigate climate change, reverse the loss of biodiversity, and leave future generations a livable, resilient world, we need everyone working together on solutions.

That’s why Manomet partners with local communities, land managers and foresters, fishermen, farmers, and business owners who are uniquely positioned to create change. We are able to help them apply the latest science and identify solutions to make their sectors, and thus our world, more sustainable.

In this Fiscal Year 2019 Annual Report, we introduce you to a few of our partners. I hope you’ll take a moment to read their stories and see how we are working together to make changes today to ensure our world thrives tomorrow.

Nancy Dempze
Manomet Board Chair


Celebrating 50 Years of Manomet

Manomet turned 50 on August 4, 2019. This means 50 years of connecting people of all ages to nature; 50 years of maintaining critical data on trends of bird migration and populations; 50 years of conserving threatened and endangered shorebird species across the Western Hemisphere; 50 years of giving everyone a seat at the table to solve the complex challenges presented by climate change. We’ve been celebrating our history all year long through August 2020 with newsletter and magazine features, interviews with Manomet alumni, events, and campaigns. Join us now as we reflect on Manomet’s 50th year and look to the future for our next chapter applying science and engaging people to sustain our world.


Our history: 1969-2019

In the fall of 1966, at the oceanfront property that would eventually become Manomet, a crew of volunteers began banding birds as part of a project to study migration along the East Coast. Based on their visits to other bird observatories, Kathleen “Betty” Anderson, Rosalie Fiske and her husband John approached Ruth Ernst, the property owner at the time, to bequeath her house and land to establish their own environmental research non-profit. The goal of Manomet’s founders was to provide a site and opportunity for long-term studies of birds and other aspects of the natural history and ecology of southeastern Massachusetts. Anderson was asked to be the first director and in August 1969, the Manomet Bird Observatory was created.

At the Beginning

Manomet Bird Observatory has become a reality, the first of its kind on the Atlantic Coast of North America…The response of the volunteer workers and of the public to the membership drive has enthusiastically ratified the decision to open permanently on August, 4, 1969.

Kathleen Betty Anderson - The first executive director of the Manomet Bird Observatory

Since Manomet’s beginnings, its science programs have branched out far beyond the Plymouth-based banding operation. With shorebird recovery and habitat management, forestry and climate science, fisheries, and more, Manomet has its foundation in science, but seeks diverse viewpoints from its many partners to work toward solving the problems we’re facing today.

Manomet is engaging people and increasing participation, building relationships with those best positioned to make change, and using science to develop practical solutions our partners can use to make our world more sustainable.

Together, we are building a better, more sustainable world—a world filled with beautiful birds to admire, healthy forests that keep our air and water clean, and fisheries and farmland that nourish us with delicious and sustainable food.

How We Work


Active Participants

Our partners are leading change to create a more sustainable world in the systems they manage: creating new sustainable agricultural practices; reducing greenhouse gas emissions; safeguarding our air and water; and teaching children how the natural world is changing around them.

Richard Carbonetti is the Senior VP and Timberland Director with LandVest, a consulting firm that works primarily with private landowners, families, and investment groups to manage forestland effectively and sustainably. LandVest, a member of Manomet’s Climate Smart Land Network (CSLN), manages two million acres in the eastern U.S.

We rely on trees for a multitude of public benefits. Healthy forests offset the impacts of carbon dioxide emissions, as trees naturally absorb carbon from the atmosphere (a process known as carbon sequestration)—about 13% of our annual emissions. In addition, 70% of our clean drinking water is a result of forests’ natural filtration of rainwater. We need our forests to stay healthy in the face of a rapidly changing climate.

But, climate science is an inherently complex subject. Foresters—the people who are best-equipped to make a difference on the ground—need guidance on how their forests can best adapt to the changing climate.

That’s where Manomet comes in. The CSLN bridges the gap between the complexity of the science and on-the-ground management. Manomet makes sense of the science and packages it in a way that foresters like Richard can use. Few people spend as much time in forests as management experts. Combined with their professional training and years working in the forestry sector, their observations of forests’ response to climate change are particularly relevant.

Active Participants

I can’t control climate but I can control what trees we grow for the future. If I can make that better, that means climate will have less of a change. We’ll have a more resilient forest that way.

Richard Carbonetti - Senior VP and Timberland Directo, LandVest

Leaders for Change

Our partners also become leaders for change in their own business sectors, industries, classrooms, and communities.

Jordan Kramer is an oyster farmer in mid-coast Maine. In 2017, he began working with Dr. Marissa McMahan, Director of Manomet’s Fisheries Division, after receiving a USDA Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program (SARE) grant to grow and farm quahogs, or hard-shell clams.

Soft-shell clams are the second most valuable fishery in Maine—valued at about $18 million in 2014. Unfortunately, soft-shell clam landings in many coastal communities have reached historic lows. A soft-shell clam farm involves seeding sub-productive intertidal flats with hatchery-raised clams and then covering the seeded area with plastic netting to protect the clams from one of its main predators, the European green crab.

This “seeding and netting” method has been used in Maine and elsewhere to protect shellfish beds from predators for over 30 years. As predation of wild clam flats intensifies with warming seawater temperatures, there is growing interest in clam farming as a means of adapting to changing conditions.

The northern quahog is a lucrative fishery in Massachusetts and the mid-Atlantic, and has promise to expand in Maine as the waters continue to warm. Northern quahogs may provide a potential adaptive solution for Maine’s soft-shell clam harvesters who have been hard hit by predation from green crabs and milky ribbon worms. Manomet is partnering with shellfish harvesters and aquaculturists like Jordan to test the viability of quahog aquaculture as well as working with communities looking to diversify their shellfish resources.

Leaders for Change

We need more farmers trying to grow quahogs within the next year or two. If we can research ways to improve our nursery products to get larger quahog seed, which can benefit both farmers and wild harvesters by supplying larger municipal shellfish growers, that would be something that can lift both the wild fishery and the aquaculture fishery.

Jordan Kramer - Oyster Farmer, Mid-Coast Maine


Scaling Impact

How does Manomet amplify its impact? Networks of diverse partners working throughout the Western Hemisphere to create the sustainable future we all want.

Shorebirds are among nature’s most ambitious long-distance migrants, but their numbers are declining rapidly with some species projected to go extinct within our lifetime. Protecting these birds is an important international conservation priority that requires proactive and coordinated efforts within each of the countries these birds fly through during their vast, pole-to-pole migrations.

The Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network (WHSRN) launched in 1985 in response to worrying population declines of many shorebird species. The Delaware Bay was nominated as the first WHSRN site and dedicated on May 21, 1986. Using the concept of linking sites, as inspired by aerial surveys of coastal South America performed by the Canadian Wildlife Service and Manomet, WHSRN grew exponentially over the course of its over 30-year history.

Today, WHSRN continues its mission to conserve shorebirds and their habitats across the Americas through action at a network of key sites. There are 107 sites in the network with 17 participating countries, including 412 partners helping to protect 38 million acres of shorebird habitat. Like many of Manomet’s programs, WHSRN’s partners are the foundation of its work. Site partners are responsible for making shorebird conservation among the highest priorities at their location, protecting and managing habitat to benefit shorebirds, and updating contact and other information for the WHSRN website and database.

And WHSRN’s partners are diverse. Members of the network range from conservationists to farmers to members of the oil industry. It takes everyone participating in the conversation of protecting habitat to make change on the ground.

Scaling Impact

The inclusion of part of the Bahía Blanca estuary managed by the port in WHSRN is the result of dialogue and collaboration between the Management Consortium and local and national conservation groups. If we conserve the estuary and its biodiversity, the port, the surroundings, and the local community all benefit.

Ing. Alberto C. Carnevali - Bahía Blanca Port Consortium

FY 2019 Financials


FY 2019 Donors


Bobolink Foundation

Howard Dobbs, Jr. Foundation, Inc.

Fidelity Charitable Gift Fund

The David & Lucile Packard Foundation

Emily V. Wade

$50,000 - $99,999

Anonymous (2)

Doree Taylor Charitable Foundation

Edwin F. Gamble Lead Trust

Hermann Foundation

Jane’s Trust Foundation

National Fish and Wildlife Foundation

The Seth Sprague Educational & Charitable Foundation

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

$25,000 - $49,999


The Bromley Charitable Trust

Communities of Coastal Georgia Foundation

Susan Galvin

Georgia Department of Natural Resources – Coastal Incentive

Halsey Family Foundation

Mr. & Mrs. Weston Howland III

Massachusetts Cultural Council

Ms. Marjorie W. Rines

Eaglemere Foundation

Russell G. Schipper & Ilse Gebhard

Schwab Charitable

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 1

$10,000 - $24,999

Anonymous (2)

BAND Foundation

Elizabeth & Redington Barrett

Diana & Peter Bennett

The Rev. Louise & Dr. Loring Conant

Dwight DeMay & Janne Corneil

Nancy Dempze & Dan Bailey

Eastern Bank Charitable Foundation

John & Janet Fuller

Jane Hallowell

Hancock Natural Resource Group

Horizon Foundation

Frank & Emily Hunnewell

Sally Leighton

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Coastal and Marine Habitat Restoration Project

Northeastern University

Nancy B. Riegel

Schrafft Charitable Trust

Brooke Stevens

Andrew & Patty Towle

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Pollution Prevention Grant Program

University of Southern Maine

Vanguard Charitable

Edwin S. Webster Foundation

$5,000 - $9,999

Anonymous (4)

David & Nancy Bryan

Eastern Bank

Evergreen II Fund

Nancy Hammond & John Hammond III*

Howland Capital Management

Gwyn Loud

John & Carolyn Marsh

Morgan Stanley Smith Barney GIFT, Inc.

Claire Corcoran & Will Murphy

Patagonia Latin America Grants Program

Mr. & Mrs. William E. Peterson

John & Thalia Pryor

Sea Breeze Foundation

Maine Sea Grant College Program

Nick Skinner

Dean H. & Katharine C. Steeger

USDA, Rural Development New Mexico State Office

Van Liew Trust Company

The William P. Wharton Trust

Tracy Winn & Joe Rigali

$2,500 - $4,999

Natasha Atkins & Scott Wing

Robert & Jennie Baker

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts

Broad Reach Fund of the Maine Community Foundation

Ian Carnathan

Charles Stanhope Adams Nature Research Foundation

Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Mary Danner

Boynton Glidden

Cynthia Hallowell

Harvard Pilgrim Health Care

Hemenway & Barnes, LLP

Sue & Chris Klem

Geoff Kronik

Sonia Loizeaux

The Maine Shellfish Restoration and Resilience Project

Suzanne & Neil McGinn

Mennen Environmental Foundation

Roger & Margot Milliken


Lawrence & Rosslyn Selzer

John & Sara Sharp

Southern Maine Conservation Collaborative

State Street

Michael Taubenberger & Kristen McCormack

Jill & Jack Whiting

Mark & Susan Zankel

$1,000 - $2,499

Martha Andersen

Nancy Anderson

Anonymous (6)

Mr. & Mrs. Reed P. Anthony Jr.

Reinier & Nancy Beeuwkes

The Benevity Community Impact Fund

Bevlin Networks

Robert & Genie Birch

The Boston Foundation

Cheryl & Michael Botieri

Cricket & John Braun

Phyllis Brissenden

Lalor & Patricia Burdick

Charles Burnham, Burnham Foundation

Robert Campbell

Chimento & Webb, P.C.

Church of the Pilgrimage

Charles Clapp III

David & Susan Clark

Cornelia & Stewart Clifford

Joyce & Lester Coleman

Charles Collins

Marian Cross

Mr. & Mrs. William K. Doggett

Jeanne Donovan Fisher

Benjamin & Dianna Emory

Andrew Falender & Jacquelyn Lenth

Penelope Farley

Patricia & Larry Finley

Linda & John Fiske

Flyfishermen’s Invitational Striper Hunt, in memory of Jon Nash

Susan Frey

Mary Gartung

Trudy Gerlach

Leslie Fraser Gold & Alex Gold Jr.

Google Matching Gifts Program

Gale R. Guild

Susan Gunderson

Susanna Hinds

JMC Food Equipment

Shawna & Sherwood Johnson

Jeffrey Kramer

Andrea Kreitman

Allie & Jim Loehlin

Christine Loizeaux

John Cole & Charlotte Lord*

Jo-Ann & Monty Lovejoy

Nancy Luke

The Maine Community Foundation

Barbara A. McMillan

Michael Moore

Virginia M. Murray

Ms. Ann R. Nichols

Dr. Ian C.T. Nisbet

Joanne & Richard Norton

Patricia O’Neill*

Mr. Leonard M. Passano & Ms. Elizabeth A. Howe

Peter Post

Pat Randall

Zannie & Pete Richards, in memory of Nancy Richards

Rockland Trust

Kirkland Ropp Crosby

Gloria Schlaepfer

Mildred Solomon

Jennifer Speers

Martha Stearns

The T. Rowe Price Program for Charitable Giving

The Whole Earth Center

Amy Thornton

Dr. & Mrs. Robert E. Timberlake Jr.

Tufts Health Plan

Peter Vancura & Brinda Adhikari

$500 - $999

100 Miles

Anonymous (2)

Ann Baruch

John Biderman

Charles Sumner Bird Foundation

Margaret Briggs

Susan & Wendell Chamberlain

William C. & Katherine A. Dixon

Mr. & Mrs. Charles W.H. Dodge

Dominion Foundation Matching Gift Program

The Echo Charitable Foundation

A Foundation of Philanthropic Funds

John Flender

Judith Gilbert

Mary Helen & Tim Goldsmith

Deb Harrison

Tom & Emily Haslett

Mr. & Mrs. William J. Hearn Jr.

Mr. R. Tod Highsmith

Patricia Hilpert & John Cloninger

Cyrus Hopkins

Natalie Houghton

HUB International

William C. Hunter

Sandra Hurlong

Charles F. Kane Jr.

Martha Kropf

Woodrow & Elaine Lackey

Dr. & Mrs. William J. Laws

Edward & Janet Lawson

Loring, Wolcott & Coolidge

Lukes Liquors

Jim & Sarah Ann Mahoney

Dorothy Mayer

John McGlynn

Lisa Meeks

Wilhelm Merck & Nonie Brady

Barbara W. Meyer

Andy Mims

Network For Good

Elizabeth & James Nichols

Ben & Anne Niles

Benjamin Olewine IV

William & Lynn Osborn

Arthur Page

Dr. Leroy M. Parker

Dr. & Mrs. Douglas D. Payne

Joan Person

Robert & Veronica Petersen

Peter & Meghan Quigley

Dr. & Mrs. J. Michael Reed

Katharine Sterling & Benjamin Reeve

Lynn & Bill Rice

William Ris, Jr. & Nancy Dorn

Hanson & Linda Robbins

Marilyn & Jay Sarles

Dr. Henry F. Sears

Jay Shah, in memory of Nan Harris

Alice Shaner-Simpson

Bill Sinnott, in memory of Dorothy Sinnott

Janice Spence

Nancy & Jim Stager

Mary & Wade Staniar

Leif Taubenberger

The Lyme Timber Company

Linnet Tse & John Forsyth

Mr. & Mrs. John Valentine

Tom & Linda Veblen

Susan Veligor

Mary Frances Wagley

Jeff & Elizabeth Wallace

Kim & Bill Walser

Sally Weedon & Deirdre Robinson

Wendell Family Foundation

Lynn Wendell, in honor of Barbara Folger

Stephen E. & Anne R. Williams

Paul Wood

Henry & Annie Woolsey

J.A. Wunderlich III

$250 - $499

Anonymous (3)

C. Redington & Diana Barrett

John & Molly Beard

LeBaron & Aileen Briggs

Elizabeth Bruhmuller, in memory of Nan Harris

Sandy & Sissy Buck

Charles & Kristen Carlson

Josette & Stephen Carter

Mary Nee & Jimmy Chapin

Claudia & Allen Clark

Carole Clarkson

Betsyann Duval & Bob Clawson

Coastal Heritage Bank

Eric & Christine Cody

Robert Corroon

Nicholas & Jennifer Crocker

Maureen Curley & Ken Stone, in honor of Michael Taubenberger

Amy Doering Smith

Patricia Donahue

Elizabeth & Alfred Dube

Kate Dumas

Anne L. & Robert G. Eccles

Alexander & Robin Ellis

Nancy Frederick

Clay Frick

GE Foundation

Steve & Lee Gifford

Elizabeth & Jeffrey Goodwin

Eva Greger Morse & Christopher Morse

Dr. Sarah Groves

Eric Grunebaum & Miram Tendler

Maury Hall

Jerry Haller & Penny Axelrod

Mark & Joyce Halloran

John Hannan

Karsten & Jo Anne Hartel

Charles & Theresa Hewitt

Cate Hopkinson

Audrey McCarthy & Dr. John Hoye

Carol James & Michael Moss

Deborah Krupenia

Linda Lancaster

David Lange

Cynthia Lee, in memory of Carol Wilder

David & Lucinda Lee

Emily Lewis

Jim Lifton

Thomas Loring

Maine Tree Foundation

Massachusetts Master Gardener Association

Marcia McKeague & Christopher Austin

Eric McNulty

Met Life

Eugene & Susan Mickey

Sandra & Marc Molinsky

Mrs. Anne M. Morgan

Amy & Shapur Naimi

Oconee Rivers Audubon Society

Janet Offensend

Marian Goldeen & Arthur Ogawa

Pell Osborn

Lisa Paige

Brooks Patterson

Elizabeth Perry

Jon & Andrea Plate

Mark & Dalia Post

Jennie & Gil Robbins

Andrée Robert & Tom Burger

Cianne & Hugh Roberts

Jenny & Mark Sawyer

Lisa & Erik Sebesta

Joe & Nell Sedransk

Elizabeth & Jonathan Seltzer

William Sloane

Elizabeth & Joseph Strauch

David & Patricia Straus

Ev & Tadhg Sweeney

The Coca-Cola Foundation Matching Gifts Program

Stephen Travis

Stephanie Turner

Philip & Janet Warren

Christine & Steven Whitebread

Karon Wierman

Chesney Wright

Dr. Julia K. Yoshida


Atlantic Sea Farms

Birds Unlimited

Boston Organics

BR Alexander & Co.

Farmers to You

Five Way Foods

Future Chefs

Hemenway & Barnes, LLC

Howland Capital

Island Creek Oysters

The KITCHEN at The Boston Public Market

Kowa American Corporation

Leena’s Kitchen

Mass Bay Brewing Company DBA Harpoon

Mintz Levin

Quicksilver Baking Co, LLC

Row 34

Salt Raw Bar


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