Lorraine Morong Donates Conservation Easement on 23 Acres in Madbury
Lorraine Morong recently donated a conservation easement on her 23 acres of land in Madbury. The Nature Conservancy accepted the easement on behalf of the Great Bay Resource Protection Partnership (GBRPP) and immediately assigned it to the Forest Society.
Located within the Johnson Creek/Bunker Creek focus area, this parcel has been identified as a high conservation priority for the GBRPP. This is an area of generally south-flowing tidal creeks that empty into the Oyster River just above its mouth on Great Bay. Along with the surrounding protected lands, Lorraine Morong’s property exerts a strong influence on the water quality of Great Bay.
“The recent State of the Estuaries Conference highlighted land protection as the single indicator of estuary health that is moving in the right direction,” said Forest Society President/Forester Jane Difley. “People like Lorraine Morong and the organizations that make up the Great Bay Resource Protection Partnership are responsible for that success.”
The land’s mix of undisturbed upland and wetland habitat, large abutting fields, and oak-pine forests supports a diversity of wildlife, even bears. The land also boasts a few remnant American chestnut saplings.
Guaranteeing public access for hiking, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing, this easement links other Forest Society lands that are also open to the public, forming a connected conservation corridor that begins at the Dover town line, extends through Madbury, and marches through Durham’s Wagon Hill Farm to the shore of Great Bay.
Founded in 1901, the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests is the state’s oldest and largest non-profit land conservation organization. Supported by 10,000 families and businesses, the Forest Society’s mission is to perpetuate the state’s forests by promoting land conservation and sustainable forestry. For more information, visit www.forestsociety.org.
The Great Bay Resource Protection Partnership uses a comprehensive approach to identify Great Bay’s most critical habitats and to protect them. With The Nature Conservancy as lead acquisition agent, the partners also include Ducks Unlimited, Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, Natural Resources Conservation Service, New Hampshire Audubon, New Hampshire Fish and Game Department, Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Local communities and regional land trusts are also community partners in the Partnership.
Since 1994 the Great Bay Resource Protection Partnership has protected more than 5,400 acres of critical habitat around Great Bay. Local communities and other organizations have protected over 3,000 acres that the Partnership has been able to use as match to leverage federal funding. The leading sources of funds include the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, North American Wetland Conservation Act and private donations. A key player in securing those funds is U.S. Senator Judd Gregg who knows the Great Bay area well.