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Over 100 acres in Addison County protected for grassland birds

  • 5 Min Read
  • April 12, 2024

Land will support birds like the Eastern meadowlark, clean water, and recreation

Many grassland bird species – including the bobolink and the eastern meadowlark – are in decline in Vermont, because of the loss of the habitat they need to thrive.

Bobolinks, who build nests from May through July among the grasses and wildflowers of fields and meadows, suffer when those spaces are mowed too early in the season, before young hatchlings have fledged.

We are working with partners to protect and restore the grassland and shrubby habitats these species need.

Grassland in Cornwall and Bridport conserved

We worked with the Vermont Department of Fish & Wildlife to protect over 110 acres of open land, streams, and wetlands in Cornwall and Bridport.

The state bought the land from Betty Lou Gorton and conserved it with us. The parcel mostly consists of highly productive grassland that will be managed to enhance habitat for grassland birds.

Addition to Lemon Fair Wildlife Management Area will expand habitat and boost clean water

The land lies east of the Lemon Fair River and was a missing puzzle piece to the Lemon Fair Wildlife Management Area (WMA). It was a missing puzzle piece for the WMA, so its addition will fill in that critical gap, expanding and enhancing habitat for vulnerable birds and other animals in the sensitive area.

The property is home to several tributaries that feed into the Lemon Fair River nearby, as well as wetlands. These resources now have special protections for clean water.

The effort builds on a similar conservation project in 2021, when we worked with the Fish & Wildlife Department to protect 415 acres in Bridport for wetland and grassland habitat restoration, and also to protect the Lemon Fair River. The WMA now spans over 1,500 acres.

Improved access for recreation

The addition to the WMA comes with significant road frontage, which will enable the public to access the area much more easily from West Street in Cornwall.

As with the rest of the WMA, the land will be available to the general public for recreation such as birdwatching, cross-country skiing, fishing, hiking, hunting, walking and wildlife observation.


The project was funded by the US Fish & Wildlife Service and the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board.

Together, we're protecting Vermont from the ground up!

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