The Finger Lakes Land Trust (FLLT) has announced its acquisition of two popular paddling destinations in the Susquehanna River. Collectively known as Tuffs Island, these two undeveloped islands cover 41 acres and contain woodlands, open habitat, and floodplain forest. They’re also home to many species of wildlife, including bald eagles and migratory birds.
The FLLT intends for the islands to serve as a conservation area with the purpose of safeguarding wildlife habitat and protecting water quality in the river. The Susquehanna River is the largest single source of fresh water to the Chesapeake Bay, which is in turn the largest estuary in North America.
“Acquiring these islands ensures that they continue to provide high-quality habitat for fish and wildlife in the future,” said FLLT Executive Director Andrew Zepp. “Areas like this are getting more precious as we continue to lose open space to development along our major rivers.”
Partial funding for this effort came from the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Grant Program for Riparian Buffer Protection and Restoration, funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and administered by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.
This is the FLLT’s second conservation project in the Susquehanna River, the first being in 1993 with the conservation of Hiawatha Island. The acquisition of Tuffs Island marks a renewed interest in conservation efforts in the region and exciting new prospects for the community at large.
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