Orange County Land Trust protects 57.5 acres in Greenwood Lake Effort will safeguard water as well as Hemlock and Chestnut-Oak forests adjacent to the Doris Duke Sanctuary
Photo by Matt Decker/OCLT
Orange County Land Trust has conserved 57.5 acres of buffer lands adjacent to the Doris Duke Wildlife Sanctuary section of Sterling Forest State Park in Greenwood Lake.
MOUNTAINVILLE — Orange County Land Trust has conserved 57.5 acres of vital buffer lands adjacent to the Doris Duke Wildlife Sanctuary section of Sterling Forest State Park in Greenwood Lake. The agreement was finalized on Sept. 6 with Orange County Land Trust and landowners Adam J. and Tinie Filipowski of Greenwood Lake, who first contacted the Land Trust about conserving their land. The property is situated within the Greenwood Lake watershed and contains habitats identified by the Department of Environmental Conservation’s New York Natural Heritage Program as significant, including a Hemlock-Northern Hardwood Forest in the lower elevations and Chestnut-Oak Forest in the higher elevations. 'Protecting what we have left'The water quality of a stream that runs through the property is also protected as a result of the acquisition. According to Land Trust Executive Director James Delaune, the purpose of this project is to enhance the habitat connectivity of Sterling Forest State Park by protecting unbroken deep-forest habitats that surround the state park. “Large tracts of forest that are not fragmented by major roadways or developments are increasingly rare in the Hudson Valley,” said Delaune. “Protecting what we have left is important for the survival of forest interior bird species and other forest-dwelling wildlife such as fishers and black bears.” PartnersThe Open Space Institute partnered with the Land Trust on this project by contributing $50,000 through its Small Grants Program. “The preservation of this land will help support wildlife habitat and clean water even as Orange County continues to grow,” said Kim Elliman, president and CEO of OSI. “This acquisition builds on OSI’s decades-long commitment to strengthening communities through the protection of natural resources that provide clean water and air, outdoor recreation, habitat protection and climate mitigation.” The project also received support from The Walt Disney Company and the Sterling Center of New York. Essential informationOrange County Land Trust is a non-profit organization dedicated to protecting Orange County's diverse habitats, watersheds, wildlife corridors, and working farmland through conservation agreements with private landowners. For more information on protecting your land, volunteer opportunities or to make a donation, visit www.oclt.org or call 845 534-3690.