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Newton, Connecticut

15 Acres | June 27, 2002
Robbie Dubroff, donor
Conservation Easement

When Robbie Dubroff purchased her Newtown, Connecticut, property in 1966, she was pleased that she could continue a legacy of gentle nurturing of the land. As an organic gardener she has kept the land free from toxic pollutants and contaminations for more than 40 years. In 2002 Ms. Dubroff donated a conservation easement to the Humane Society Wildlife Land Trust, designating these 15 acres as a permanent wildlife sanctuary.

Ms. Dubroff’s initial interest in a conservation easement was to prevent future development on the property. There have always been pressures in the area to build on the valuable open land. But she chose to work with HSWLT because it is the only national land trust that prohibits recreational and commercial hunting and trapping as well as further development and destructive logging practices. These restrictions are designed to protect not only the land but also the wildlife who call it home.

The Dubroff Wildlife Sanctuary is a mostly forested tract that has regenerated from former farm land with a portion devoted to an unmowed meadow. The forest is a diverse mix of hardwoods including white ash, red maple, various oaks, tulip tree, and even scattered yellow birch, typically a more northern tree. Nut and fruit trees add to the appeal of the sanctuary for a wide variety of creatures.

Some of the property boundaries feature stone walls, and a perennial brook flows along the one border. A seasonal stream follows one of the stone walls along the western boundary.

Many animals make their homes here, including deer, coyotes, foxes, raccoons, woodchucks, rabbits, opossums and wild turkey. A wide variety of bird species, including eagles, hawks, owls and bluebirds, nest here, and many more pass through during migration season.

Although this sanctuary remains privately owned, the Humane Society Wildlife Land Trust has an obligation to perform periodic inspections to ensure that the wildlife habitat remains in good condition and that the terms of the conservation easements are being met.  These inspections, and the handling of any destruction or violations, cost heavily in professional staff time, consultants, and travel expenses. In addition HSWLT needs a reserve of funds for the substantial legal fees needed if enforcement of violations involves court action.

HSWLT has promised to protect this property as sanctuary forever -- and that promise will be kept.  If you can help with the cost of stewardship for this and the other properties HSWLT protects, please donate here.

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