Les Mehrhoff Grant

Congratulations to Bent of the River Audubon Center.  They are the 2015 winners of the Les Mehrhoff Grant.  The grant will be used to assist with funding of a part-time intern to eradicate invasive species, primarily Japanese barberry, from approximately 5 acres of its Weasel Swamp.


Dr. Leslie J. Mehrhoff worked tirelessly to preserve plant biodiversity in Connecticut, New England and beyond through his work with invasive species and rare and endangered plants.  He was the founder of the Connecticut Invasive Plant Working Group (CIPWG), and served as Director of the Invasive Plant Atlas of New England (IPANE).  Les also worked for the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at UConn as the curator of the George Safford Torrey Herbarium.  As a naturalist, Les was active in numerous conservation organizations including the New England Wildflower Society, the Connecticut Botanical Society, the Torrey Botanical Club, and many, many others.  His dedication to the preservation of natural communities through the knowledge, control and eradication of invasive species plays a pivotal role in the understanding of wetland science which the Connecticut Association of Wetland Scientists (CAWS) strives to promote.  CAWS is pleased to announce a $1,000.00 annual grant in Les’ honor which is aimed at protecting the plant communities of Connecticut. 

Grant Objective

CAWS is seeking to provide support for on-the-ground preservation efforts or invasive control efforts conducted by non-profit, community groups, or individuals directed at preserving plant biodiversity within Connecticut.  The recipient/group need not be a member of CAWS in order to apply.  Ideal candidates would include Land-Trusts, Garden Clubs, Citizen & Student Conservation Organizations and related groups.

Use of Grant

The grant amount is $1,000. The grant is intended to aid on-the-ground control and/or preservation efforts for plant communities within Connecticut.  Funds provided are intended to be used for direct implementation actions.  This grant is not directed toward research.  It is expected that the funded project will include a monitoring component to evaluate its efficacy.

Awarding of Grants

The CAWS Selection Committee will award the grant on the basis of:

1.      statement of need
2.      goals of the project
3.      implementation plan
4.      ecological benefits
5.      monitoring plan/success criteria


      1.      Applicants must certify on the application, that if the funding will (or may) support the chemical control of invasive species, that the parties conducting the spraying are appropriately licensed by the state of Connecticut to apply pesticides. Applicants must certify that any required federal, state, or local permits which may be required are obtained prior to the implementation of project goals associated with grant funding.

Application Procedure

Revisit this page towards the end of 2015 to obtain next year's application form.