This month, MHLC added more than 300 acres to our land protection portfolio in Rensselaerville through the transfer of two conservation easements from the Open Space Institute (OSI). Rensselaerville is one of MHLC’s Conservation Priority Areas and acts as a conservation corridor between the Catskills and the Capital Region. As the leading local land trust, MHLC is excited to take over the stewardship responsibilities that come with these easements, which border existing MHLC conservation easements in Rensselaerville and expand and improve upon our protected acreage in the area.
The larger of the two conservation easements, CBM Farms, was protected in 2012 by the Open Space Institute. This property features deep forests, working agricultural lands, and spectacular views overlooking the hamlet of Rensselaerville. The easement protects the property from further development, ensuring its future as a rural estate to support farming and forestry activities. In 2017, MHLC protected the Eldridge property, an approximately 220-acre farm directly adjacent to CBM Farms, making the transfer of this Open Space Institute conservation easement to MHLC a natural addition to MHLC-protected lands in this area.
The second easement adjoins CBM Farms and protects part of Hennicke Marsh, a wetland owned by the Edmund Niles Huyck Preserve. The property was originally part of CBM Farms when it was acquired by the Open Space Institute in 2013 and was subsequently donated to the Huyck Preserve. Hennicke Marsh is a diverse wetland which protects water quality, scenic views, and provides important habitat for songbirds, mammals, amphibians, and rare plants. Hennicke Marsh is located directly north of CBM Farms, making this another wonderful addition to our land protection efforts in this Priority Area. Both easements provide a significant buffer of protected land surrounding the Ten Mile Creek watershed, an important water source for the region.
We are grateful to our partners in conservation, the Open Space Institute, for providing us with the opportunity to add these two important properties to our land protection portfolio. Conservation easements allow the landowner to maintain ownership of the property while restricting the development and land uses on the property in perpetuity. These lands remain in private ownership and are not open to the public. We thank these landowners for protecting these lands in perpetuity for a healthier Capital Region for current and future generations.
To learn more about MHLC’s Conservation Priorities, visit our new Where We Work page.
You can learn more about how MHLC’s corridor work by visiting our new Conservation and Climate Change page.