Les Mehrhoff Grant

Congratulations to the Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center.  They are the 2019 recipient of the Les Mehrhoff Plant Biodiversity Preservation Grant for their restoration work at the 45 acre Coogan Farm in Mystic, CT.

Please check back with us in the fall of 2019 as we start taking applications for the 2020 grant.


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

To apply, CLICK HERE to obtain a copy of the form in Adobe .pdf format.

To apply, submit only the following:

  • ·        Application Form (type or print neatly on the attached form) identifying person responsible for the implementation of the proposed project;

  • ·        Statement of Need that includes the title, project objective, proposed start and finish dates;

  • ·        Description of the proposed site, including the target species, natural community, or critical habitat, history of the impact of invasive species on the target species or community, and site ownership/access permissions;

  • ·        Description of the proposed work plan, detailed methods of invasive species removal practices to be employed, safety precautions to be used to protect existing vegetation within the treatment area, any proposed acquisition actions for property (if applicable), and monitoring protocols for the effectiveness of the proposed action;

  • ·        Project budget;

  • ·        List of any land use permits which may have already been issued related to the proposed action;

Applications must be emailed by February 14, 2019 to wetlands@ctwetlands.org.  Applicants will be notified by the Selection Committee by February 22, 2019 and the sucessful receipient's name and project will be announced at the CAWS annual meeting on March 14, 2019.

The recipient will be asked to submit a project report and expenditure summary at the completion of the project.  The recipient will also be asked to present the project at the next annual CAWS meeting (either in short oral presentation, or a poster presentation).  If the recipient is not available to present the project at the next meeting, he or she must notify the current CAWS president at least three months prior to the next meeting.


Email applications (pdf is preferred) to
The Les Mehrhoff Plant Biodiversity Preservation Grant Committee at: wetlands@ctwetlands.org
 by February 14, 2019