Twenty volunteers from Ascendant Group topped 50 Casuarinas, removed numerous  casuarinas saplings and hand-excavated 10 new Cahow burrows. *Photo supplied
Twenty volunteers from Ascendant Group topped 50 Casuarinas, removed numerous casuarinas saplings and hand-excavated 10 new Cahow burrows. *Photo supplied

THURSDAY, DEC. 29: Christmas came early for Nonsuch Island this year thanks to the Ascendant Group of Companies.

Under the supervision of Jeremy Maderios (Conservation Officer) and Billy Mitchell (Facilities Manager) groups of volunteers from Ascendant braved stormy conditions and pounding rain to assist the Department of Conservation Services with the removal of invasive plants from Nonsuch Island Nature Reserve and to make room for its new and growing colony of Cahows.

Over the course of two days 20 volunteers topped 50 large invasive Casuarinas, removed numerous casuarinas saplings from cliffs around the island and excavated by hand 10 new Cahow burrows from solid rock.

Ascendant Group’s giving did not stop there. The Volunteers offloaded a barge full of supplies and literally carried a ton of windows, doors, shutters, building supplies and equipment, also contributed by Ascendant, from the dock up the Nonsuch Island stairway to the buildings.

This allowed a building contractor, hired by Ascendant, to replace storm damaged or rotting windows, doors and shutters to all of the Reserve’s main buildings.

Jeremy Maderios said: “My personal thanks, and that of the Department of Conservation Services goes out to all the organizers and volunteers that willingly carried out some very hard work in often trying conditions.”

Drew Pettit Director of Conservation Services said: “On behalf of the Department of Conservation Services I would like to extend a very big thank you to the Ascendant Group, its volunteers and building contractor for all of their efforts. It’s through efforts such as this that the restoration of Bermuda’s premier Nature Reserve and our national bird will continue to go from strength to strength.”