It's About the Land 11-30-2012

Totoket Times November 30, 2012

North Branford Land Conservation Trust, Incorporated

It’s About the Land

The horrific storm named Sandy that clobbered the east coast several weeks ago betrayed a friendly–sounding nickname. Sandy wrought a degree of devastation that few could imagine on Shoreline areas along the East Coast. North Branford and other inland towns didn't suffer the flood related damage of Shoreline areas but the "super storm" blew trees down on power lines and across public roads and private driveways, knocking out power, damaging houses and landscaped yards. Back in the woods, trunks of healthy looking trees snapped in two, large branches were wrenched from tree crowns while others were uprooted, falling into smaller trees and bending them nearly to the ground. The storm did not discriminate. It did not favor small parcels or large parcels. Wind related tree damage is everywhere.

Your land trust owns approximately 231 acres scattered about town in 50 parcels. Our largest tract of land is just shy of 27 acres. Many of these parcels are no more than one, two or three acres. Nevertheless they are important to many adjoining residences as a buffer and screen between dwellings and occasionally commercial/industrial zone areas. The trees on these parcels also provide protection to watercourses and hold soil in place on steep slopes that would otherwise erode. They provide habitat corridors for wildlife, and trap fugitive dust stirred up by cars and trucks. Natural environment such as these deserves the attention and care of its nearest neighbors.

If you are a neighbor to a land trust parcel, and are interested in helping maintain areas dedicated for the protection of open-space, we invite you to come to the next meeting of the N. Branford Land Conservation Trust on December 5, 7:00 p.m. at the Atwater Memorial Library meeting room. These parcels need the attention of local land stewards – you, the caring neighbor. We need extra hands to control invasive shrubs and vines that if left to grow will take over the forest. We need extra eyes to report dumping of trash dirt and rubble, and other encroachments on land trust property. "Leaners" and defective trees that if left to grown may pose a future threat to nearby structures and public safety. We have the expertise on our board to help guide neighborhood work crews in caring for these parcels. We also have a map of the town showing virtually every parcel including our land trust parcels. Come on down and see if your place of residence is next door or near a land trust parcel. You will meet people who share your interest in protecting and maintaining open spaces. We hope to see you on December 5 and the monthly meetings that follow. 

Otto Schaeffer, Secretary/Director

North Branford Land Conservation Trust, Incorporated