On Saturday, August 1, approximately 70 community members and CLC supporters gathered at Ooms Conservation Area to partake in stand-up paddling, kayaking, and old-fashioned games. One of the highlights of the day was biologist Casey Tompkins’ collection of a 55-pound snapping turtle, which he estimated was approximately 65 years old! Casey’s presentation focused on common misunderstandings about the turtles, which are primarily lazy vegetarians as adults. For more information about how you can continue to enjoy Ooms this summer, click here.
Featured News and Highlights
(Scenic Hudson/Andy Martel)
Working together with farmers Eileen Wallding and Nicholas Pandjiris, Scenic Hudson and Columbia Land Conservancy (CLC) have protected 60-acre Whistle Down Farm in Claverack. Whistle Down is the latest farm to be protected through this partnership. The farm offers Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) shares and also sells at the Hudson Farmers Market.
Conserving agricultural land by purchasing conservation easements provides farmers with capital to invest in their operations and ensures the farmland will be available for the next generation of farmers. Read the full press release here.
A population of the rare/sensitive West Virginia White butterfly (Pieris virginiensis) has recently been identified at Hand Hollow Conservation Area by the New York Natural Heritage Program. The location where the butterflies were found is a moist hardwood forest patch supporting a diversity of native wildflowers, including the Broadleaf Toothwort/ Crinkleroot, the host plant for this rare butterfly’s larvae. We hope you share in our excitement about this discovery.
The presence of rare species makes it even more imperative that we control invasive species at our Conservation Areas. Garlic Mustard, an encroaching invasive plant, resembles Crinkleroot and fools the West Virginia White to lay its eggs on it. Garlic Mustard however is toxic to the larvae. If you are interested in helping CLC control invasives at our Conservation Areas, please contact Nate Davis, 518 392 5252, ext. 205.
You will notice new signage in Greenport Conservation Area’s parking area relating to closing time and the parking lot gate. This is due to some disruptive after-hours activity that we experienced, and we are making a few changes to address the problem. The Greenport gate will lock at 9:00pm throughout the summer and the lot will be subject to video surveillance. Please leave yourself plenty of time to get back to your car before the gate is secured. Vehicles in the lot after 9pm will be ticketed and/or towed. Please help us be both good stewards of the land and good neighbors to the community by following the rules posted at each of our Public Conservation Areas. Thank you.
The exhibit ‘An Artful Life on the Farm: Sculpture and Works on Paper by American Folk Artist Lavern Kelley‘ opens on July 18, 2015 at the North River Gallery, 29 Main Street, Suite 2B Chatham NY 12037, with reception from 4 – 7 pm. Thanks to the generosity of gallery owner Telesport Putsavage, 10% of the proceeds from this wonderful show will be donated to the CLC. Lavern Kelley’s (1928-1998) life on the farm started at an early age and led to his masterfully painted carvings and drawings of farm vehicles and the folks who used them. The exhibit will remain on display through August 15, 2015. Gallery hours are: Friday 12 – 7pm, Saturday 11am – 5pm, and by appointment. After the exhibit closes in Chatham, it is going to the Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown. Don’t miss this great exhibit and your opportunity to support CLC!
Last month, the second annual Best of Columbia County awards were handed out, and CLC was once again among the winners: the Greenport Conservation Area received the ‘Best Hiking /Biking Trails‘ award in the ‘Best of Community’ category. The event was organized and sponsored by the Register-Star, Chatham Courier and the Chamber of Commerce. Newspaper readers and Chamber members voted for their favorite organizations or businesses online and by ballot. CLC is proud to have our efforts recognized by the community the second year in a row: connecting people with the land and conserving rural land. Thank you for your vote. Keep on hiking!
by Peter Paden Published July 1, 2015 in the Register-Star
One of our grandest dreams at the Columbia Land Conservancy is that the work we do will nurture a widespread appreciation among the people of Columbia County for the scenic beauty and rich ecological and agricultural resources of the land we inhabit and a commitment to cherish and protect those resources for future generations. If enough of us truly value these things and understand their vital importance to our pocket books, our health, our environment and our quality of life, we will insist that the policies and practices that guide our economic development strategies and land use planning are designed to ensure that these special qualities will endure.