Photographs by Courtney Bent

The Trust for Public Land, 2006

Rescuing Wetlands Close to Home tells the stories of ten New England landowners with a deep connection to their land, and how they protected wetlands vital for wildlife habitat, clean water, and flood protection.

From the introduction:

I visited landowners in every state in New England. I went to swamps in the mountains of Vermont and off Route 2 outside Boston. I saw green and gold marshes where herons fished and tiny fiddler crabs scuttled in the mudflats; vast beaver-engineered stream-and-pond systems that make life possible for moose, otters, fishers, ducks, trout and many other inhabitants of the wild; and shallow bowls in the woods that filled just long enough to hatch a few spring crops of salamanders and frogs.

The people I met were as different as the landscapes they lived on. Some liked to fish and hunt; others carried binoculars, notepads, and cameras. There were people whose families had lived on the land for generations or far longer, like John Banks of the Penobscot Indian Nation in Maine, whose ancestors had hunted and fished their territory for 10,000 years. There were former city dwellers who bought their land recently. ... Very few had special expertise in environmental restoration or protection, at least not until they undertook their projects.

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