Community Forest in the Upper Watershed Conserved

Posted January 14, 2021

 

The northern two thirds of Quigg Island in Stevens Pond, the Quigg Island Community Forest, is now permanently protected and is the Georges River Land Trust’s first preserve in the headwaters of the watershed. This region is characterized by the quality of its natural assets, including high water quality, scenic and recreational opportunities, and productive woodlands, all of which contribute to its economic vitality. Within this context, this community forest will be managed to sustain the forest growth and health while providing the public with the opportunity to explore and experience the quiet surroundings as well as the diverse plant and animal life. Stevens Pond is one of the jewels of the midcoast, reminiscent of the northern wildlands of Maine.

Quigg Island Community Forest is a 40-acre woodland property with deep coves, varying topography, and a mature white pine and hemlock forest community situated in an ecologically rich pond. Access to the property is available from the public launch on Route 173, managed by the Town of Liberty. The access is also used by the community for swimming and recreating in the pond, and recently the Town announced improvements to Stevens Pond access, including picnic tables, handrails to access the pond and benches that will be in place this coming year. In the coming year, GRLT will also develop appropriate access on the island that supports the existing public use of the pond as well as the private ownership and neighbors to the south of the protected property on the island.

The conservation success of this amazing property is credited to the support of many citizens, private foundations including Davis Conservation Fund, Bafflin Foundation, Virginia Wellington Cabot Foundation, Fields Pond Foundation, and Trout Unlimited, as well as the USDA Forest Service, Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program.

The Land Trust looks forward to welcoming citizens of Liberty and surrounding towns, community organizations and business’ such as CALL (Citizens Association of Liberty Lakes), Katahdin Regional Boy Scouts, Robbins Lumber Inc, and others to help support the ongoing care and enjoyment of the property.

The Georges River Land Trust’s mission is to conserve the ecosystems and traditional heritage of the Georges River watershed region through permanent land protection, stewardship, education, and outdoor experiences. GRLT is a network of conservation easements, trails, and preserves protecting more than 4,000 acres with 60+ miles of public trails. It is an equally opportunity provider.

For more information about the work of the Georges River Land Trust, please visit www.georgesriver.org, or email specific questions about conservation to Annette Naegel at annette@grlt.org.