Recent Purchase Protects Portion of Hidden Springs Creek that flows into Ephraim’s Eagle Harbor
Door County, WI – Door County Land Trust is pleased to announce the recent acquisition of 30 acres of undeveloped land as part of the Gibraltar-Ephraim Swamp Natural Area. This property, which lies approximately 600 feet from the water of Green Bay, contains a portion of Hidden Springs Creek. The majority of the property is a forested wetland, with a small farm field that is now transitioning back into forest. The Land Trust’s work here will help protect the quality of the water flowing into Eagle Harbor and Green Bay as well as protect the stream corridor and important fish spawning habitat.
Door County Land Trust now protects 307 acres within the Gibraltar-Ephraim Swamp Natural Area, which contains more than 1,600 acres that are identified as contributing to the overall health of the wetland. Door County Land Trust will continue land protection efforts in the area, an important step towards improving streams and fish spawning habitat. In addition to providing a refuge for birds and wildlife, Gibraltar-Ephraim swamp’s coastal wetlands provide benefits to the Village of Ephraim by filtering and absorbing waters that might otherwise create flooding events and by helping prevent sedimentation in Eagle Harbor.
Gibraltar-Ephraim Swamp Natural Area was listed by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WI-DNR) as a priority site in A Planning Tool for Migratory Bird Conservation along Lake Michigan, which was published in 2019. Due to efforts aimed at protecting important migratory bird habitat in the Great Lakes region, a part of the funding for this property was provided through a competitive grant award from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Joint Venture. Additional funding was provided by the WI-DNR Knowles Nelson Stewardship Grant Program, as well as the Bock Foundation, and Door County Land Trust members.
To meet the needs of this expanding nature preserve, Door County Land Trust will continue to raise funds for further land protection efforts and for the long-term care of the Gibraltar-Ephraim Swamp Natural Area. In 2020 Door County Land Trust seeks to raise at least $136,000 towards wetland protection and restoration efforts in Gibraltar-Ephraim Swamp, as well as Washington Island’s Big and Little Marsh and Coffey Swamp, and fishery habitat near Little Sturgeon and Sawyer Harbor in southern Door County. Contributions from the community and from Land Trust supporters make projects like this possible. To help protect and care for these places, Door County Land Trust encourages community members to make a contribution of support at www.DoorCountyLandTrust.org.
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