Volunteer Projects

Tidewater Master Naturalists participate in a variety of volunteer projects.

Projects are grouped into the following categories.

  • Education: promote public awareness of the natural environment
  • Citizen Science: participate in ongoing scientific studies
  • Stewardship: get dirty!
  • Administrative: help keep the chapter working for everyone

Some of the ongoing  projects supported by chapter members include…

Monthly trail maintenance of the Bald Cypress and High Dune trails at First Landing State Park


This bridge on the Bald Cypress Trail was recently rebuilt by chapter member volunteers.


Lafayette Wetlands Partnership

Ruth Martin (TMN14) has been leading a volunteer project to restore the Lafayette River wetlands adjoining the Riverpoint Playground near DePaul Hospital in Norfolk.  Thickets of very dense phragmites (Phragmites australis), an invasive non-native wetland reed, had grown up adjacent to the natural wetlands there, obstructing the riverfront views as well as out-competing native plants.  The project’s objective is to remove the phragmites and replant with native grasses, shrubs and trees to recreate an attractive and natural wildlife habitat.  To date, about 8,000 square feet of shoreline has been cleared of phragmites; over 1,000 plugs of native grasses and 40 trees have been planted.   The project will continue into 2016 and 2017.  Funding has been provided by several nonprofit agencies and the neighborhood civic league.  The project is supported with technical assistance and expertise from members of the Lafayette Wetlands Partnership




Paradise Creek Nature Park projects

Volunteers help in a variety of ways at this hidden gem in Portsmouth. They have identified an array of tree species, installed tree ID markers, picked up trash, stained the wooden boardwalk, pulled invasive plants, helped lead educational walks and bio-blitzes, bagged native flower seeds, remove goose netting and much more. Contact Sarah Sumoski at The Elizabeth River Project for more information, SSumoski@elizabethriver.org.
Barb and Mickie plant longleaf pine trees
Barb and Mickie plant longleaf pine trees


Lynnhaven River NOW

There are many volunteer opportunities available in support of restoration of the urban Lynnhaven River.

Trash pickup at Francis Land House
Trash pickup at Francis Land House
Studying oyster reefs in the river
Studying oyster reefs in the river




Friends of Indian River projects

Striving to improve the quality of life for all the residents of the Indian River neighborhoods of Chesapeake, Virginia, by promoting and preserving a healthy and clean river, shorelines, parks, and green spaces connected to the surrounding community.

Website: http://friendsofindianriver.org

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FriendsofIndianRiver
Twitter: https://twitter.com/indianriverpage


Removing Invasive Ivy
Removing Invasive Ivy

Turtle Watch

Volunteers find and relocate sea turtle nests to safer locations.


Stranding Team

Volunteers assist with the rehabilitation and release of injured animals.


Raising Butterflies

Volunteers raise and release butterflies.


Norfolk Botanical Garden Butterfly House

Volunteers staff the butterfly house and educate the public.


Each year there is a Monarch Tag & Release event at the Botanical Garden open to the public.




 Oyster Gardening

Volunteers raise oysters that are added to local reefs.




Evelyn’s Wildlife Refuge

Volunteers help rehabilitate a variety of wildlife , many of which are reintroduced to the wild.


Tidewater Chapter of Virginia Master Naturalists: Promoting natural resource conservation in southeastern Virginia