Newly Protected! 17 Acres Adjacent to Bay Shore Blufflands Nature Preserve

The following post was written by our wonderful land trust member Door County Land Trust.

Sturgeon Bay, WI – Visionary landowners Nancy Aten and Dan Collins recently completed the donation of a 17-acre conservation easement to the Door County Land Trust. The property, located near the 274-acre Bay Shore Blufflands Nature Preserve, adds to a complex of ecologically rich lands where several rare and threatened species have been identified. Waters from agricultural lands to the east are filtered through wetlands on the property before draining into the bay of Green Bay.

A conservation easement agreement with private landowners permanently limits the land uses and protects conservation values. Partnerships like this allow the Door County Land Trust to create corridors of land protection for the benefit of native plants and wildlife. “We are so pleased to partner with the Door County Land Trust in preserving and protecting these additional acres of wooded wetlands in Bay Shore Blufflands.” said Nancy Aten.

Door County Land Trust conservation easement program manager Drew Reinke said, “Our land protection work in the Bayshore Blufflands State Natural Area is a perfect example of implementing two land conservation programs for increased benefit. Through the 274-acres owned by the Door County Land Trust and open to the public as a nature preserve, and nearby conservation easement agreements on 137 acres of private lands, we conserve land in the most effective way.”

Part of the Niagara Escarpment complex, the property includes wetlands which were most likely never farmed or grazed, preserving the native plants found here. As such, it is the longest stretch of pristine escarpment remaining in Door County.  “It is especially timely to protect these wetlands with a conservation easement given the Wisconsin legislature’s contemplated bill that would remove all protections from wetlands just like these,” added Dan Collins. “The capacity of these wetlands to reduce flood damage along with their connected ecological benefits should be protected. Thankfully the Door County Land Trust is here to help.”

Door County Land Trust executive director Tom Clay said, “The connection between the health of the land and water, and the health of the people, plants and animals is undeniable. Future generations will thank us for protecting these ecological gems. Landowners like Dan and Nancy are a part of the solution to protecting our drinking water and the health of the land.” As the holders of the conservation easement agreement, the Door County Land Trust agrees to monitor the property annually to ensure that the terms of the agreement are adhered to by the private landowners. The conservation easement protects the property permanently and remains in effect for all present and future owners.

About the Door County Land Trust

The Door County Land Trust’s mission is “To protect Door County’s exceptional lands and waters…forever.” It is a nonprofit, community-based organization that conserves land via purchase, donation or conservation easement agreements. Founded in 1986, the Door County Land Trust has protected more than 8,000 acres from Washington Island through southern Door County.

Trail maps for 14 featured Door County Land Trust nature preserves may be found on our website, hiking map and trail map apps. These preserves are open year-round to the public at no charge for hiking, cross-country skiing, wildlife observation, hunting, and other low-impact, non-motorized recreational activities. For more information and to become a Land Trust member visit or call (920)746-1359.