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Great Lakes Article:

Lake Erie Preserve Nears Completion
Environmental News Network
01/06/04


The Trust for Public Land and Erie MetroParks announced today the addition of a significant 14-acre property to the new East Sandusky Bay Preserve MetroPark along the Lake Erie shoreline. The land will become part of an extraordinary naturally functioning freshwater marsh near Cedar Point Amusement Park that will eventually consist of 1200-acres of protected natural land. Located between Cleveland and Toledo, East Sandusky Bay is an important stop over point along one of the largest bird migratory routes in the eastern U.S.

This past Fall, The Trust for Public Land transferred two properties totaling 1,029 acres to become part of the larger nature preserve. Erie MetroParks will manage the Preserve, part of which is known as the Community Foundation Preserve at Eagle Point, in recognition of the foundation's generous support and leadership. The Nature Conservancy also played a role by making available the 956-acre Putnam Marsh, which it protected in the early 1990s, for inclusion into the preserve. These new 14 acres are surrounded by already protected land on three sides and are adjacent to Plum Brook which flows into the bay. The Trust for Public Land is working with another private landowner to add a fourth and final property to the preserve later this Spring.

Funding for the preserve has come from Federal, State, and private sources including the Clean Ohio Conservation Fund and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. U.S. Senator Mike DeWine (R-Ohio) and U.S. Representative Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio) secured $2.5 million in federal funds from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Coastal and Estuarine Land Conservation Program, and have been strong supporters of this conservation effort.

The new East Sandusky Bay Preserve MetroPark is one of several key protected natural areas along the Lake Erie Shoreline including the Ottawa International Wildlife Refuge and the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge. Under the management of Erie MetroParks, the area will be available for scheduled recreational, educational, and interpretive programming opportunities such as bird watching and observation of the American Bald Eagle; waterfowl, wildlife, and wildflower identification; and wetland, forest, and meadow ecology.

The Trust for Public Land conserves land for people to enjoy as parks, gardens and other natural places, ensuring livable communities for generations to come. Founded in 1972, the Trust for Public Land has helped protect more than 1.4 million acres across the nation. In 2001, The Trust for Public Land helped protect the nearby 1,300-acre Edison Woods Preserve, which is the largest single conservation project in northern Ohio in decades. For more information, visit the Trust for Public Land on the web at www.tpl.org.

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