WPC Ensures Permanent Protection of Land Along French Creek

Tue, Jan 8th 2013, 09:04. Filed under News Releases.

Venango, Pa. – Jan. 8 – The Western Pennsylvania Conservancy recently acquired a parcel along French Creek which will protect a key stretch of the stream containing riffles, runs and islands, the organization announced today.

The four-and-a-half acres in Venango, Crawford County, is on French Creek, one of the most ecologically significant waterways in the mid-Atlantic region. It starts in Chautauqua County, N.Y., and flows 177 miles through northwestern Pennsylvania into the Allegheny River. 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 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, president and chief executive officer of the Conservancy. “This acquisition continues our longstanding focus on conserving land in the watershed and protecting the creek.”

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

This property is located adjacent to Conservancy-owned property and 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.

A photo has been made available for media use at: http://goo.gl/qNimE

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About the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy:
The Western Pennsylvania Conservancy (WPC) enhances the region’s quality of life by protecting and restoring exceptional places. A private nonprofit conservation organization founded in 1932, WPC has helped to establish ten state parks, conserved more than 233,000 acres of natural lands and protected or restored more than 1,500 miles of rivers and streams. The Conservancy owns and operates Fallingwater, which symbolizes people living in harmony with nature. In addition, WPC enriches our region’s cities and towns through 140 community gardens and greenspaces that are planted with the help of 13,000 volunteers. The work of the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy is accomplished through the support of more than 11,000 members. For more information, visit WaterLandLife.org.

Media contact:
Allison Schlesinger
Western Pennsylvania Conservancy
412-586-2358 (office)
412-607-1945 (cell)
aschlesinger@paconserve.org