Our mission is to conserve the ecosystems and traditional heritage of the Georges River watershed region through permanent land protection, stewardship, education, and outdoor experiences.
Land trusts exist to protect the special places in our landscape that hold conservation value. We are a community service provider, offering expertise and conservation options to landowners, as well as engaging in open space planning with municipalities. Lands protected by a land trust can include public access to water resources and natural areas, trails for hiking and other low impact recreational activities, hunting and fishing, traditional resource uses such as forestry and agriculture, and help to mitigate climate change. The Maine Land Trust Network created a report to the Legislature in 2017 highlighting the beneficial role land trusts play in communities across Maine.Read More
With individual landowners, we help to develop a plan that best reflects the landowner’s goals for his/her property as well as conservation values of the land itself. As an advisor, our role also is to assist in executing the plan which can involve an easement, donation, or sale of the land. At the community level, we can assist in identifying properties determined by towns to be in need of conservation.
You may be considering conservation for a variety of reasons: you want to see your property remain principally undeveloped, you may recognize a special feature that you believe should be shared with others, you may want to pass the legacy of your land as you know it to your children, or you may be concerned about taxes and your ability to keep the land. We would be pleased to help you learn about the process and benefits of donating your land for conservation, and meet to discuss the techniques for conservation that are best suited to your land and to your personal goals. Also available is a comprehensive guide to conservation options for landowners.
Stewarding the Land
Once a property is protected through a conservation easement, the land trust assumes the role of monitoring the conservation values in perpetuity. Conservation easements are permanently attached to the title of the property, and the land trust is responsible for assuring that the protected features (habitat, streams, fields, etc.) remain forever.
A key activity to providing this assurance is an annual monitoring visit to the property. Staff and/or volunteers contact landowners in the fall to set up a site visit, discuss any questions about the terms of the easement, and provide a written report for the permanent files. In between annual monitoring visits, our staff responds to inquiries from landowners, offers opportunities for land management information and training, and helps to smooth transitions for new owners of easement lands.
Other helpful information:
What is a conservation easement?