Saving the Oswegatchie Hills - Why a Coastal Forest Matters to ALL of CT
Ever heard of or hiked the Oswegatchie Hills? The Oswegatchie Hills are a fragile coastal forest located in southeastern Connecticut on the Niantic River, a tidal estuary between East Lyme and Waterford that flows directly into the Long Island Sound. The Hills teem with wildlife and encompass rugged forest, vital wetlands, and spectacular rock formations.
Over the past 15 years, the Town of East Lyme has been in protracted legal battles with a developer over the fate of this fragile coastal forest. To help protect this valuable location, the town and local land trust created the adjoining Oswegatchie Hills Nature Preserve and formed an all-volunteer Friends of the Oswegatchie Hills Nature Preserve group. Since 2005, the preserve has grown to almost 460 acres of undeveloped forest and the steep rocky terrain provides habitat for wildlife, solitude for hikers, and a natural water filter for the Niantic River.
The northern third of the Hills are still in jeopardy with a proposed high-density housing development. Join us as Suzanne Thompson gives the latest news on this high profile land battle, provides a virtual tour of the Oswegatchie Hills Nature Preserve and Niantic River, and suggests tips for how you can help protect this special place.
Connecticut Forest & Park Association (CFPA) is one of the early signers to the Save Oswegatchie Hills Coalition, which calls for the remaining parcel to be protected and added to the preserve. The Coalition was launched in January by Connecticut Fund for the Environment/Save the Sound (CFE/STS) in cooperation with the Friends of the Oswegatchie Hills Nature Preserve and Save the River-Save the Hills (STR-STH).
Speaker Suzanne Thompson is the Save Oswegatchie Hills Coordinator with CFE, a STR-STH Board member, a journalist, and the radio talk show host of CT Outdoors on WLIS and WMRD AM radio stations.