With a smile on her face and a twinkle in her eye, Anne Messinger became the newest donor of a conservation easement with the Chippewa Watershed Conservancy (CWC) on February 4, 2015.
“I’m so happy to know that this land my late husband and I have loved will be permanently protected,” she said.
“When we bought the property in 1973, it was a hayfield with about four acres of forest. We allowed it to go as natural as possible and improved it for wildlife habitat. We loved letting nature take over and minimizing negative human impact. Our small piece of the Earth and caring for it with love and respect became our lifetime passion.”
The 19-acre property is about ¼ mile from the Chippewa River, and 1 mile from Sylvan Solace Preserve in Isabella County. Anne has planted wildflowers on part of the property and a local beekeeper maintains beehives. Needless to say, butterflies and native bees, not just honeybees, love it.
CWC Executive Director Stan Lilley remarked, “It is such a pleasure to watch a landowner like Anne go through the decision making process, and then light up with joy on signing day. I’ve been through this many times now, and I have a deep respect for the people who so unselfishly give of themselves for the benefit of future generations.”
John Mitchell, CWC President, who signed the easement on behalf of the Conservancy, said, “We are honored that we could help Anne make her dream come true.”
“I know my husband would be just as thrilled as I am,” said Anne.