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Water, Land, Life
WPC enewsletter

February 2013

WPC Protects Section of Ecologically Significant Waterway


A recent land acquisition will continue the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy’s longstanding focus on protecting French Creek and conserving land in the watershed.

The Conservancy recently acquired a parcel along French Creek that will protect a key stretch of the stream containing riffles, runs and islands. This new acquisition is adjacent to another WPC-owned property and is near a section of the creek known as the Venango Riffle, an important habitat found along the stream.

The four-and-a-half acres in Venango, Crawford County, is on one of the most ecologically significant waterways in the mid-Atlantic region. French Creek starts in Chautauqua County, N.Y., and flows 177 miles through northwestern Pennsylvania into the Allegheny River.

“The French Creek watershed contains numerous fish species of greatest conservation need in Pennsylvania and 26 freshwater mussel species, including rare federally endangered species, and the eastern hellbender salamander” said Thomas D. Saunders, WPC’s president and CEO.

The Conservancy has protected more than 4,224 acres within the 1,250-square-mile French Creek watershed since 1969.

This property will create 1,570 feet of contiguous frontage along the creek. The organization will own and manage the land, with the goal of reforesting the area with native tree species. The Conservancy plans to manage the land as a natural area, open to the public for passive outdoor recreational activities.

A bequest to the Conservancy from a donor Helen Katz provided financial support for this project.

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