Help us protect one of the most resilient riparian corridors in Southern Maine. Thoit’s Branch is a haven for wildlife habitat and marsh ecology and bio-diversity. Let’s keep it that way!
Please give now to RRCT’s Land Acquisition Reserve Fund to help us create this new preserve in 2020!
RRCT’s Thoit’s Branch Headwaters Preserve is a planned new 75-acre preserve off Upper Minot Road in Pownal. The preserve will be created by the purchase of a 57-acre parcel abutting an existing a 17-acre RRCT woodlot.
With frontage on Thoit’s Branch and frontage on the bogs and marshes seen off Pownal’s Poland Range Road, the new preserve will support wildlife, marsh ecology, and traditional uses including hunting and local snowmobile access. The streambanks and wetlands of the Upper Thoit’s Branch watershed have been mapped by The Nature Conservancy as among the most resilient riparian climate corridors in southern Maine, anticipating the need for adaptation to climate change. For TNC data for this parcel, see also the Maps section on this page.
Formerly, the Elmer & Bertha Edwards Libby Farm, the parcel today hosts mature forests with a few areas of old pasture now providing edge habitat. Neighborhood snowmobile trails and old logging roads allow exploration year-round.
The acquisition is part of a larger RRCT-led initiative to focus on the conservation values of Pownal’s Thoit’s Branch watershed, described further below. Thoit’s Branch flows through Bradbury Mountain State Park and through RRCT’s Old Harris Road Preserve before its confluence with the East Branch of the Royal River near Route 9 (Hallowell Road) in Pownal.
In 2020, RRCT is raising $40,000 for acquisition and stewardship of this planned new preserve, through donations to RRCT’s rolling Land Acquisition Reserve fund.
The budget is here:
- $30,000: Acquisition of 57.5 acres from Southworth Investments, LLC, at $30,000. At roughly $500 per acre, the acquisition value is well below market value, generously offered by the landowner.
- RRCT’s legal fees, survey, and due diligence have been covered by Land Acquisition Reserve Fund donations from previous years.
- $10,000: New donations to RRCT’s Land Acquisition Reserve Fund as a result of this project will allow RRCT to transfer $10,000 to RRCT’s long-term stewardship reserves, which we invest to care for land for perpetuity. This $10,000 boost associated with this acquisition will generate 4% income per year ($400 per year) to cover land management and other expenses.
- Staff time and overhead: Staff time and overhead for land acquisition for this project comes thanks to your past support of RRCT through your annual personal and business donations.
Donations to the Land Acquisition Reserve Fund: click here. Thank you for your support! On the form on the next page, you can earmark your donation for the Thoit’s Branch Headwaters Preserve. The donation form also allows donations in memory of individuals, including a former beloved neighbor, the late Jim Boyles.
Full details on Land Acquisition Reserve Fund policy and approach, and long-term stewardship reserves: click here
Contact us if you’d like specific progress reports on this small campaign, or budget reports on our actual use of Land Acquisition Reserve Fund money.