by Carla on September 13th, 2017

Canoochee Bogs Fundraising Goal Nearly Met

Big news for the Canoochee Bogs! The Georgia Native Plant Society and its members recently donated over $7,000 to the bogs during a “challenge grant” from its board of directors. Folks from Vidalia, to Atlanta, and even up to Pennsylvania donated to protect the bogs and had their donations matched by GNPS.

The Georgia Native Plant Society is a nonprofit dedicated to promoting the stewardship and conservation of Georgia’s native plants and their habitat. They have played an active role in conserving the bogs over the past 23 years.

With this outpouring of support, the project is only $4,000 away from completion. Thank you to the plant community for helping to protect this precious resource!

The Canoochee Bogs, which are located in Southeast Georgia, are part of the longleaf pine ecosystem and provide crucial habitat for three carnivorous pitcherplant and seven orchid species, as well as Georgia's state reptile (gopher tortoise), and migratory songbirds. Permanently protecting this habitat from development will safeguard these rare species while allowing for habitat restoration. Ongoing restoration activities include prescribed fire, increasing rare plant populations, and removal of invasive woody shrubs.
Conservation groups from across the state, including partners at the Georgia Department of Natural Resources and the Georgia Plant Conservation Alliance, have worked diligently since the late 1990’s to conserve the Canoochee Bogs, which span several privately-owned land parcels. The private landowners’ willingness to allow access to their land for rare species monitoring and restoration has been critical to this project’s success.
Conservation easements (CE) are voluntary, yet legally binding, agreements which allow private land ownership while restricting development. CEs are used to protect water quality, wildlife habitat, scenic areas, agricultural land, and historic sites. Permanently binding, conservation easements benefit current and future generations. Public benefits provided by conservation easements include the protection of drinking water, clean air, and scenic landscapes.

by Carla on August 16th, 2017

Project Nears Fundraising Goal

by Carla on August 13th, 2017

Event Details

Raise a glass and toast ORLT's Founders at Smith Wilson and Dianne Penny's farm. Beer, wine, cocktails, and a rich array of desserts will be served. Join us as we honor ORLT's Founders, catch-up with old friends, and enjoy the evening beneath leafy shade trees.
When: Sunday, August 13th at 7:00pm
Where: Smith Wilson and Dianne Penny's Farm
580 Morton Road, Athens, GA 30605 
Who: ORLT members and friends
RSVP required. Please email to RSVP.

A History of the Founders

According to one Founding Board Member, this photo represents the early days of ORLT, when the all-volunteer organization was "learning what a land trust was and what it should be doing." Through continuous learning, public outreach, and teamwork, 10 individuals laid the foundation for an organization that has since protected over 26,000 acres of greenspace in Georgia.

ORLT started with a single idea, “Let’s start a land trust,” but it would not be what it is today without the work of many incredible, dedicated people.

Join us as we celebrate ORLT's Founding Board Members and those individuals who have built and sustained us over the years.

Who Were the Founding Board Members?

Madeline Van Dyck (President)
Daniel Hope III (Vice President, pictured above on left)
Terry DeMeo (Secretary)
Joseph M. Heikoff (Treasurer)
Laurie Fowler (Counsel)
Albert F. Ike
Hans Neuhauser
W. Robinson Fisher
Milton Hill
Walter F. Cook (Pictured above, on right)

by Carla on May 30th, 2017

ORLT Board Member, Kathy Parker, recently published an article titled, "Tallasee Forest: Avian Gem in the Greenway Necklace." The article highlights the various habitats of the Tallassee Forest and the diverse avian species which use these habitats for foraging, resting during migration, and breeding. Kathy, a retired geographer who travels the world photographing wildlife and landscapes, also included many vibrant shots of bird species that have been found at Tallassee.

Tallassee Forest is a 310-acre conservation easement located on Tallassee Road in Athens. Owned by Athens-Clarke County and slated for public use, it will eventually be open for passive recreation.

If you are interested in the Tallassee Forest, or if you just like birds and beautiful photos, we recommend reading this article! For further information on this conservation easement, please visit our Publications page.

by Carla on January 19th, 2017

Bird with ORLT and the Oconee Rivers Audubon Society at the Lotsanotty protected property in Jackson County. Birders of all levels are welcome to join. Lotsanotty is a forested property with several miles of trail which birders will walk in pursuit of migrating species. In years past, birders have spotted Louisiana waterthrush, summer tanager, black-and-white warblers, great horned owls, and over 30 other species.

The bird walk will begin at 8:00am and end around noon. Please wear sturdy shoes and weather-appropriate attire. There are no facilities on the property so please bring water and snacks as needed. Bring binoculars if you have them.

Directions: Travel north from Athens on Prince Ave/US 129 into Jackson County.  Immediately past the intersection of GA 330 with US 129, turn LEFT onto Lebanon Church Rd. Then, turn LEFT onto Ford Rd.  Proceed 935 feet to the property entrance on the RIGHT.

This event is FREE and open to the public. No RSVP needed. In case of inclement weather, check the Oconee Rivers Audubon Society website for event status.

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