New Conservation Director Focuses on Connectivity

We are excited to welcome Sarah Walsh, our organization’s first Conservation Director, to the MHLC team. Sarah joined in late May and will oversee our stewardship activities and assist with land acquisitions.

As Sarah delves into fields, forests, and filing cabinets, she brings a focus on connectivity to our conservation work. One of Sarah’s goals is to link our preserved lands, providing a critical link for wildlife between the Capital District, the Catskills, and the Adirondacks.

“This position is getting me back to my non-profit roots and I’m very excited to join this team at an exciting time for conservation in the Capital Region.”

Sarah brings nearly ten years’ experience in habitat restoration initiatives for bird habitat, riparian and wetland areas as well as experience in protection of conservation lands, non-profit program development, and trail planning. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Wildlife Science from SUNY ESF and her Master’s degree in Science Education from the University of Albany in 2012. Sarah is an avid outdoor enthusiast who enjoys back-country skiing, mountain biking, hiking, paddling, sailing, and bird watching.

As Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy celebrates twenty-five years of conserving lands, we will continue to strategically conserve lands while taking into account research and policies regarding climate change and connectivity. We will also continue our goals for providing the public with ways to connect to the land of this region through acquisitions of parcels that allow for public access and recreational opportunities.

Sarah, Sawyer, & National Trails Day Volunteers

On October 21, we will be opening the Fox Preserve, a generous donation of land in Colonie from Pat Fox. This 70-acre Preserve offers hiking trails with views of Shaker Creek and the Mohawk River and is located within walking distance of the Mohawk-Hudson Bike Trail, providing visitors a great place to hike rest and enjoy the wonderful green spaces this region offers. On June 3, volunteers joined Sarah and our Stewardship and Volunteer Coordinator, Sawyer Cresap, at the Fox Preserve for National Trails Day. The group spent the morning clearing brush and making trails, preparing this Preserve for its Grand Opening this fall.

A week later, Sarah and Sawyer traveled to Hagaman to visit Mosher Marsh. Ellie Peters donated this 43-acre parcel to the Conservancy in 2008. Ms. Peters, conferring with our conservation team about recent flooding and beaver activity at the Preserve, remarked that her father had scattered a bag of lupine seeds in their garden when they built the house over fifty years ago. Today, the flowers are still blooming and have migrated all the way over to the preserve entrance and all throughout the meadow along the trail.

Sarah and Sawyer noted buttercups, bird boxes, clover, and a daisy that loves the wet soil near the beaver lodge – Philadelphia Fleabane. The trail is currently flooded near the first bridge, so visitors to the preserve are  encouraged to walk up along the meadow near the lupine.

Enjoy these photos of Mosher Marsh from Sarah, Sawyer, and our Stewardship Intern, Jake Hill.

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