In February, the Musquash Pond Preserve, on Bunker Hill Road in Jefferson, was transferred from The Nature Conservancy to Midcoast Conservancy. This was the second step in creating a 473-acre preserve that extends to Musquash Pond. The project permanently protects 6,500 feet, 78% of shore frontage, on undeveloped Musquash Pond and will prevent it from being developed, so that future generations can enjoy its beauty. The Musquash Pond Preserve also protects 2,450 feet of frontage on Dyer Long Pond.
In addition to shore frontage, the Preserve protects wildlife habitat, including waterbird and waterfowl breeding, migration, and wintering habitat. Musquash Pond Preserve includes 105 acres of wetlands which provide critical flood control.
Partnership with The Nature Conservancy played a significant role in making the project possible. Says Maine Preserves Manager Daniel Grenier, “The vegetation at the preserve is exceedingly diverse with more than fourteen forest types, as well as several types of wetlands. Having this special place cared for locally by Midcoast Conservancy, to my mind, is the best possible conservation outcome.”
A partnership with the three siblings in the Johnston family, Rick, Mark and Laurel, spurred this project. In 2018, Mark Johnston attended a Midcoast Conservancy event for landowners to learn about options to conserve their land. In October 2019, Midcoast Conservancy conserved 257 acres in Jefferson that had most recently been in ownership with the three siblings.
Anna Fiedler, Midcoast Conservancy director of conservation, said, “Hunting, fishing, and hiking will be welcomed at the preserve, and we will be exploring options for public recreational uses. We want to work with the community to find ways for people to enjoy Musquash Pond that are in balance with its tremendous value for wildlife.”
This project was made possible by generous funding from: North American Wetland Conservation Act, The Nature Conservancy, Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund, and Margaret Burnham Charitable Trust.
Midcoast Conservancy’s mission is to protect and promote healthy lands, waters, and communities through conservation, outdoor adventure, and learning. For more information, go to midcoastconservancy.org or call (207) 389-5150.