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Cedar Creek Wildlife Project, Inc., Northeast Indiana, Newsletter, Summer 2002

Cedar Creek Wildlife Project, Inc.

Newsletter - Summer 2002

Meeting Aug. 10

A special meeting of the board of directors and members will be held August 10 at the Garrett Public Library, 9:30 a.m. Parking is on the west side.

A briefing on legal appeals of the permits for logjam removal is on the agenda, and a report of the DeKalb County logjams will be given. In late June, despite CCWP and landowners’ formal appeals of state government permits, the surveyor had Sieber Bros. remove two logjams north of the DeKalb-Allen County line with heavy equipment.

Come early Aug. 10 to enjoy refreshments with neighbors in the Cedar Creek valley. The Garrett Public Library is at 107 W. Houston, on the south edge of downtown.

Gravel Mines Impact Habitat

Gravel mines in DeKalb County have impacted streamside (riparian) habitat.

North of U. S. 6, just below Cedar Lake, a gravel mine operator south of the creek began stream mining. During April and May, the creek bank between the mine and the creek broke down completely.

As a result, the water quality north of Waterloo was very muddy. In late June, two boats were placed in the water where the creek appears now to be very wide. The mine is visible from highway I-69.

The Corps of Engineers, Indiana Department of Environmental Management and Department of Natural Resources were notified of the stream mining. Two other mines south of Auburn have been developed next to the creek.

Wetlands Tour Held

May 11, a tour of wetlands was held in the Cedar Creek area. Wetlands of many types were seen, and birds included a harrier hawk, swallows, and ducks. Many thanks to the Ft. Wayne chapter, Izaak Walton League of America, for the use of their parking lot for the car pool.

Log Jam Removal Methods Debated

Alternatives to traditional “clearing and snagging” or channelization of Cedar Creek were researched and written in a short report during late winter. Logjam removal methods have different impacts on the water quality and wildlife habitat.

Joyce Carroll, Jane Dustin, Jerry and Conny Amstutz, Gretel Smith, Bob and Judy Davis, Mary Anna and Fred Feitler, Dave Freeman, and Karen Griggs attended the meetings that led to the report.

Wetland Tour Guide Printed

A descriptive guide of wetland types and a small map, suitable for a self-guided auto tour, is available from Jane Dustin, 637-0011.

Thanks to Mike Walter for designing and updating our Internet website at

Wetland Ruling Appealed

Cedar Creek Wildlife Project has joined the appeal of a wetlands protection lawsuit on the side of the Indiana Department of Environmental Management.

A state judge ruled in February in favor of the Twin Eagles development, northof Ft. Wayne, claiming that the state cannot protect formerly farmed wetlands that have become a subdivision.

Attorney David Van Gilder represents the Cedar Creek Wildlife Project in the case.

Over 20 wetlands would be lost to urban sprawl on the parcel, but the case is important because many other wetlands in fields and woods are threatened by ditching and filling. Wetlands next to creeks and rivers have more legal protection than isolated wetlands.

The threat to Indiana’s authority to protect wetlands is so important that the Indiana Division Izaak Walton League and the National Wildlife Federation have also entered the case as friends of the court. A brief, or legal argument by these organizations, is known as an amicus brief. Amicus curiae is a legal term for friend of the court.

The Great Lakes Aquatic Habitat Network and Fund made a grant through the Save the Dunes Council to assist the Cedar Creek Wildlife Project in the court case to protect wetlands.

Donations to help defray the legal expenses can be sent to CCWP, Inc. P. O. Box 140 Huntertown, IN 46748.


The annual meeting of the Cedar Creek Wildlife project was held April 6 at the Dupont Branch Library, Allen County.

Election of officers was held, and many wildlife habitat issues were discussed.

Karen Griggs, Ashley, gave a slide program about the Palmiter Method of River Restoration.

Thanks to Karen Elliot and her committee for the refreshments.

Thanks to the Ft. Wayne/Allen County Public Library for their meeting room and audio-visual equipment.


Officers elected at the annual meeting include
Pres. Al Diefenbach,
Vice pres. Randy Roberts,
Treas. Faith Van Gilder,
Sec. Jane Dustin,
Recording Secretary Sue Diefenbach, and
Membership Secretary Jean M. Wise.

Members of the Board of Directors are
Jerry and Conny Amstutz, Nancy Baker, Peg Ballinger, Kate Birdseye, Joyce Carroll, Bob and Judy Davis, Karen Elliott, David Freeman, Mary Anna Feitler, Ron James, Shirley Meighan, Kathryn Moore, Carmen Nicklin, Jerry and Diana Mackel, Dee Pence, Judy Ruoff, Mark Shambaugh, David Thoma, Susan Till, Dick Widdicombe, Will Wise, Gene and Irma Wolfe.

Grant Funds Slide Show

A slide show about Cedar Creek, complete with script for showing to local groups, was funded by the Great Lakes Aquatic Habitat Network Fund. The Cedar Creek Natural Areas and Water Quality Preservation Advocacy Project began July 1, led by Karen Griggs, Ashley.

Survey Results

Allen County highway officials should not widen Cedar Canyon road down in the valley, most CCWP members said, in a spring survey.

Most CCWP members oppose building a covered bridge over Hursh Road at Metea Park, and they very strongly oppose allowing any more commercial zoning north of Union Chapel Road, according to the overwhelming majority of members who answered the survey.

A new I-69 interchange off/on ramp at Hursh and Auburn Roads was strongly rejected.

Signs to control truck traffic and traffic speeds were strongly favored by those polled.

Results of the member survey about transportation were analyzed by Jean Wise.

Wildlife Notes

A member writes:
“I keep a stash of peanuts in the garage and throw several out on the driveway each morning…a black squirrel camps out in the bush next to the driveway in anticipation of the handout."

Newsletter Volunteer Staff

Co-editors: Joyce Carroll and Karen Griggs
Proofreader: Faith Van Gilder
Circulation: Bob Walton, Joyce Carroll, and Jane Dustin

Cedar Creek Wildlife Project, Inc.
P. O. Box 140
Huntertown, IN 46748
Al Diefenbach, Pres. 637-6690