Our latest land campaign, the Fish Hawks & Steelhead Habitat Campaign, will permanently conserve two parcels of land, totaling 71 acres, to help provide and protect critical habitat for our local osprey, bald eagle and steelhead populations!
Osprey and bald eagles are spectacular birds that rely on both uncontaminated clean waters and healthy landscapes to flourish. One of the two sites we are seeking to conserve is a 57-acre parcel on and near Goose Creek, which includes almost a half a mile of creek streambank and is a known breeding territory for our local osprey. The second site, a 14-acre parcel located along Chautauqua Creek has both creek and beach frontage and is also well-known breeding territory and hunting ground for bald eagles.
The Chautauqua Creek site is also one of the most popular and scenic steelhead fishing locations in Western New York. Conserving this site will protect habitat for the steelhead population, the fishermen who come from near and far to catch them and the many hikers who frequently enjoy the scenic beauty of this fantastic site. As the creek delivers food to a variety of fish and migratory birds, this area of Chautauqua Creek and its adjacent lands have been designated as a "significant habitat" by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation adding to its historic and ecological significance.
Conserving these two sites will also have the added bonus of protecting our local economy. According to the 2017 NYSDEC Angler Survey Report, fisherman annually directly expend $9,687,256 in Chautauqua County. Steelhead are the second most popular fish targeted in our county, and steelhead fishing accounts for 11% of angler efforts. In other words, steelhead fishermen spend more than $1 million annually in Chautauqua County with a majority of these expenditures coming from out-of-county fishermen.
To date, we have raised $121,850 of the $280,000 needed to acquire and protect these two precious sites. If you would like to be a part of helping our local osprey, bald eagle and steelhead populations, please donate here. Any and all donations make a difference!
For more information on the campaign or to ask about pledge payments, contact our Director of Development, Whitney Gleason, at 716-664-2166 x1006 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
(images courtesy of Frank Cone, Jeanne Wiebenga and Taylor West)