The Land Trust applauds the recent purchase of 50 wooded acres in Schuyler County by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC). Acquisition of the land will ensure continued public access to a popular segment of the Finger Lakes Trail and protection of mature hardwood forests that buffer nearby wetlands.
Acquired with assistance from the Land Trust’s landowner outreach program, the site will be added to the state’s holdings at Texas Hollow and managed as a public conservation area. The property hosts more than 600 feet of the Finger Lakes Trail and features a mix of red, black, and white oak, as well as eastern hemlock, red maple, and white ash. It also contains a small wetland.
Funding for the acquisition came through the state’s Environmental Protection Fund (EPF) in coordination with the NYSDEC. The EPF is a source of funding for projects that protect the environment and enhance communities. It also supports the stewardship of millions of acres of public lands, including state parks, throughout the state of New York.
This recent acquisition expands the network of conserved lands known as the Emerald Necklace. The Emerald Necklace is an ambitious effort to link 50,000 acres of existing public open space that extends in an arc around Ithaca – from Finger Lakes National Forest in the west to Hammond Hill and Robinson Hollow State Forests in the east. These lands host 78 miles of the Finger Lakes Trail, two Audubon-designated Important Bird Areas, and several dozen Tompkins County-designated Unique Natural Areas. The Emerald Necklace is also recognized as a priority project within New York State’s Open Space Plan.
In recent years, the Finger Lakes Land Trust has worked cooperatively with the NYS DEC to conserve 11 parcels within the Emerald Necklace, including key additions to Connecticut Hill Wildlife Management Area and Yellow Barn State Forest.
To learn more about programs and services of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, visit www.dec.ny.gov.