Winnakee Protects 81 Acres

Winnakee Permanently Protects 81 Pristine Acres in the Towns of Red Hook and Milan

Rhinebeck, NY, October 24, 2016: Winnakee Land Trust has accepted a donated conservation easement on 81 beautiful acres of wetland and forest in the Towns of Red Hook and Milan. Landowners Ellen and Sam Phelan, long-time advocates for land conservation, have chosen to protect their land from development by establishing an easement with Winnakee Land Trust.

“We are delighted to have Winnakee accept an easement to our 80+ acre woodland and wetland property in northeast Red Hook,” said Ellen and Sam Phelan. “It is part of one of the last extensive woodland areas in Red Hook. For over 25 years we have enjoyed viewing the wildlife and natural scenery of the property. It was a playground for our children and has provided us with warmth (fire wood) each year. With Winnakee’s assistance we now can be assured that the natural beauty and resources of our property will be protected in perpetuity. Many thanks to Winnakee’s professional staff for helping to make this possible.”

“Sam and Ellen Phelan have a great appreciation of the rural, scenic landscape of northern Dutchess County and are dedicated to protecting it for future generations. This gift of a conservation easement not only protects an important natural asset for the entire community, but also offers inspiration to other landowners to develop easements on their property,” said Gregg Swanzey, Executive Director of Winnakee Land Trust.

Such conservation easements permanently protect water resources, habitat, migration corridors, valuable diverse forests, and the scenic quality of local communities. Aside from the satisfaction of forever protecting a beautiful parcel of land, a donated conservation easement brings several generous tax benefits to the donating landowner.


Watershed map showing Phelan property easement and its impact on the Hudson River

According to Tierney Rosenstock, Land Project Manager at Winnakee; “The Phelan property easement protects pieces of two large wetland complexes of open marsh and hardwood swamp. Protection of wetland habitats ensures foraging and breeding ground for a variety of birds, fish, amphibians, and other wildlife. The property lies at the headwaters of the Saw Kill, the Stony Creek, and the Roeliff Janson Kill, making it critical to the protection of Hudson River water quality.”

Winnakee Land Trust, incorporated in 1989, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation of natural, agricultural, and scenic land and the connection of trails in northern Dutchess County and beyond. At the heart of the Winnakee’s mission is a deep regard for the history and natural beauty of northern Dutchess County.

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