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2012 Year in Review

In 2012, we had a total of 2,736 volunteer hours contributed to our work at nine preserves and a combined total of 3,909 volunteer hours across all program areas! Interested in volunteering your time? Send us an email at for more information!

During our Earth Day celebration, Picnic for the Planet, The Nature Conservancy hosted 31,435 people at 3,100 picnics across 59 countries! This also included 244 people at our celebration in Lansing, MI. Keep your eye out for information on our 2013 Earth Day celebrations!

This past year we remembered Dr. Ed Voss at a memorial held at our Grass Bay Preserve. Dr. Voss' annual guided field trips at Grass Bay were always the first to fill to capacity because participants knew what a rare opportunity it was to visit a natural area with a leading botanist.

On July 27th, we celebrated the expansion of our popular Carl A. Gerstacker Preserve at Dudley Bay. This effort was made possible by the generous support of the J.A. Woollam Foundation, Jerry Jung, Helmut F. Stern, the Wild Shore Foundation and the Highland Foundation.

In August, The Nature Conservancy in Michigan launched their Facebook page. Since then, we have gained more than 500 “likes” and connected with people from 20 countries! “Like” us today:

On August 28th, The Nature Conservancy in Michigan closed on a land swap with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, the result of which consolidates some of our ownership in the Two Hearted River watershed, the Keweenaw and Northern Lake Huron.

Our Ives Road Fen Preserve turned 25 on December 11th, 2012! A wet, spring-fed prairie blends into the floodplain forest to create a globally significant habitat. In 2010, volunteer and staff stewardship crews celebrated a restoration milestone by completing a 17-year effort of clearing invasive buckthorn from much of the preserve.

Working with the Michigan Natural Features Inventory and Nature Conservancy of Canada, the Conservancy just completed “blueprints” or biodiversity conservation strategies, covering all the Great Lakes except Superior. The reports outline areas that harbor very high biodiversity, as well as areas that will need a lot of attention.

The Nature Conservancy played a critical role in the development of a new paper published in the online version of the prestigious Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. According to this paper, we can visually see for the first time how multiple layers of stressors and threats are mapped geographically across the basin.

In 2012, The Nature Conservancy protected over 4,000 acres across Michigan that included adding 1,620 acres to our current properties and acquiring two new preserves!

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