Nature Conservancy Receives Funding to Conserve Over 500 Acres Along Kittatinny Ridge
Funding will help protect vital habitat along globally significant ridge.
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania | February 29, 2016
The Pennsylvania Chapter of The Nature Conservancy has been awarded funding from the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) to assist with efforts to preserve forestlands along the Kittatinny Ridge. The awards, announced by Governor Tom Wolf and DCNR Secretary, Cindy Dunn, are part of a statewide initiative to create new recreational opportunities, conserve natural resources and help revitalize local communities.
The Kittatinny Ridge, also known as the Blue Mountain, is a globally recognized migratory corridor for birds of prey, songbirds, butterflies, and many species of mammals. And it provides many people with a visual reference, as it is the prominent mountain ridge extending 185-miles through Pennsylvania from the Delaware Water Gap to the Susquehanna River Gap and south before stretching into Maryland.
“The Nature Conservancy would like to thank DCNR and Governor Wolf for this vital funding to help the Conservancy preserve these properties along the Kittatinny Ridge,” said Bud Cook, The Conservancy’s Northeast Pennsylvania Director. “These are high-priority locations that might otherwise be developed and lost forever.”
The funding will be used toward the conservation of two very different, high-priority properties along the Kittatinny Ridge in Pennsylvania. The first is a 193-acre ridge-and-valley parcel located along Cherry Valley Road in Smithfield and Stroud Townships in Monroe County, and the second, is a 352-acre ridgetop property overlooking the Susquehanna River in Rye and Penn Townships and Marysville Borough in Perry County. The Conservancy plans to preserve the properties for open space, habitat protection, and for passive recreation such as walking, bird watching and wildlife viewing.
“These lands provide respite for migratory species, provide clean drinking water for millions of people, and help to clean our air,” said Mari-Beth DeLucia, Pennsylvania Land Conservation Manager for the Conservancy. “Unfortunately, they are also at serious risk of development.”
The Conservancy is partnering with six Pennsylvania land trusts to increase the amount of protected land on the Kittatinny Ridge by working with landowners who are interested in conservation.
“There are many options for landowners to consider,” said DeLucia. “Conserving one’s land is the most important thing a landowner can do to protect their property for future generations, for wildlife, and to help protect the Ridge.”
The Conservancy would also like to thank Audubon Pennsylvania, Central Pennsylvania Conservancy, Friends of Cherry Valley, Marysville Borough, Penn Township, State Representative Mark K. Keller, State Senator Rob Teplitz, Stroud Township, and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service for their support.
To learn more about The Nature Conservancy’s work in Pennsylvania.
The Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world's toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at unprecedented scale, and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in more than 65 countries, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit www.nature.org or follow @nature_press on Twitter.