6,500-acre forest in central Vermont protected for conservation

Published: Jan. 14, 2022 at 8:17 AM EST
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WORCESTER, Vt. (WCAX) - The Vermont Land Trust says more than 6,500 acres of forestland in Worcester and Elmore has been conserved under a deal with the state.

This area is known as Worcester Woods and spans both sides of Route 12, adjacent to the C.C. Putnam State Forest. The Meyer family, owners of the Deer Lake Timber Company, acquired these lands in the 1950s from a lumber company and kept the forest intact. In 2014, they sold it to the land trust to support conservation.

“Protecting these private lands through conservation easements has been a long-standing priority for Vermont’s Forest Legacy Program. This accomplishment is the culmination of years of effort by the Vermont Land Trust, the Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation, the USDA Forest Service, and others. Success on this project means that these properties will remain forested and will continue to contribute to the vibrant working lands economy of our state while benefiting wildlife, protecting water quality, and providing perpetual access to the public for dispersed on-foot recreational activities such as hunting, birdwatching, walking, and snowshoeing,” Forest Commissioner Michael Snyder said in a statement. “You won’t see these properties posted because access rights have been permanently secured through the easements for the benefit of the public.”

Officials say the area has significance for wildlife internationally, connecting the Green Mountains all the way to Nova Scotia in Canada.

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