Resources for CNY Land Trust’s volunteer Stewardship Committee. Interested in joining this committed crew? Everyone is welcome. Meetings and events are posted here.
The Importance of Stewardship:
The Central New York Land Trust owns over 3,000 acres of land in our community. Ownership of land is one thing. Stewardship of the land is another, and a very important piece of the Central New York Land Trust mission. Through contributions, Central New York Land Trust will be able to make the properties that we own even better places to visit. This is why stewards are so important.
Stewards are individuals who visit their assigned properties at least monthly, but many times more than that. Three important areas they handle are management, monitoring, and improvements. Each preserve has its own management plan, where history and ecological areas are noted, goals are developed, photos are taken and actions are noted. These plans are updated annually. Monitoring is an ongoing process, ensuring that the land is being cared for in the best way (no dumping, invasive species are under control, land-use policies are being followed, etc.). As we make property improvements, such as a parking lot, a kiosk, benches, signs, trails, and boardwalks, a property evolves to more public use status.
We have over 100 volunteers involved in our stewardship activities – but we can always use more. Becoming a steward is a great way to get outdoors, meet new people, and help save the land.
See below for an example of people involved in our program:
Volunteer Spotlight: John Barr
Volunteer Spotlight: Peter Huntington
Peter Huntington has been involved with the land trust since 1970 when it was “Save the County”. He walked with his family in many of Save the County fundraising walks; his oldest son even got bitten by a harmless snake on one of the walks.
According to Peter, “I originally became involved because of my love of nature and the need to preserve our natural environment. My main function as a steward is to maintain well marked and easy to walk trails. I also try to be an advocate for the land trust preserve system. I aspire to remove as many invasive plants as possible from Tracy Lake Preserve which is no small feat!”
Jack Gramlich, Co-Chair of the Stewardship Committee, states “Peter has been a very valuable steward for our land trust. He is always looking out for Tracy Lake, whether it is recruiting Boy Scouts for trail work, pulling invasive plants or monitoring the preserve.”
Since he has worked there for years, Tracy Lake is his favorite preserve, although he says he also loves Baltimore Woods!. Says Peter, “volunteering for the land trust makes me feel that I am helping to preserve our natural world, which needs all the help it can get.”