The Mississippi Madawaska Land Trust is delighted that donations received by the Big Creek Campaign to mid-December represent approximately 80% of the $48,500 needed for the acquisition and future stewardship of the Byrne Big Creek Nature Preserve.
This exceptional property was bequeathed to the MMLT by the late Joel Byrne who was a strong supporter of the Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists and the Macnamara Field Naturalists Club.
Long-time friend of Joel Byrne, MVFN member Cliff Bennett, spoke for many when he said that the generous response from donors is testimony to the high regard in which Joel was held. “The Campaign also offers an opportunity for many new residents in the area to learn about the important work done by the Mississippi Madawaska Land Trust to secure ecologically significant lands for the enjoyment of future generations. So in a way, Joel continues to donate and to educate.” said Mr. Bennett.
“The Byrne Big Creek Nature Preserve is an ecologically significant property,” says Cathy Keddy, a noted ecologist and Chair of MMLT’s Ecological Stewardship Committee. “Just a brief survey revealed that it provides habitat for 19 plant species of significance in Lanark County and likely many more. The floating wetland, hardwood forest and soft maple swamp are a few of the property’s highlights. Joel’s great gift to the Land Trust ensures that this biodiverse property will be protected forever.”
The MMLT is very grateful for the donations received to date and is appealing to those who might still wish to contribute to this campaign to help us reach the campaign goal. Plans are also underway for fundraising events in the New Year to close any final gap.
For those wishing to help to make this dream a reality, please visit the MMLT website at mmlt.ca and click on the Big Creek Campaign.