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Providing a Bit of Refuge

“The goal on our 40-acre conservation easement is to increase wildlife diversity by restoring high quality habitats. First we must remove invasive plants like spotted knapweed in the prairie portion that have displaced the native sources of food and cover with which birds and other animals have co-evolved. Now we are planting native (pre-settlement) grasses and forbs.

Future goals will be to do the same in the wetland and woodland portion of our land. Our easement is part of a wildlife corridor and adjacent to Leelanau State Park. We are also part of a major migratory flyway for birds. We want to be a refuge for the many species of declining wildlife.

Restoration is daunting work but we’ve had help from the Northport Point summer kids program, Conservancy volunteers and Suttons Bay High School students. We’ve also had help from various government programs (see below). We’re excited that future generations may have an opportunity to view a large diversity of wildlife in Leelanau.

-Ann & Doug McInnis, Northport.