Happy New Year!
Dear friends,

Happy New Year! We hope you had a safe and restful holiday season. We can all agree that 2020 was both unpredictable and unexpected. Although it was a tough year for many people, nonprofits, and small businesses, we continued to have positive outcomes in land and water conservation at WCLC as highlighted in our 2020 Annual Report. We focused in on our Priority Conservation Areas, stewarded 1,000+ acres, and engaged our community in new and exciting ways.

We would love to hear any good news you have to share, too! Reach out to us via email, and let us know what your favorite part of 2020 was.

We look forward to sharing more conservation impacts in 2021 - where we will be focusing on stewarding 3,016 acres of land, getting more people out on these preserves, and sharing restoration successes with you. We hope you will follow along this year and maybe even get involved in our work!

the WCLC team
WCLC's Newest Protected Area
Spengler Wetland Preserve

WCLC added another preserve to our portfolio. The Spengler Wetland Preserve is just under one acre and was donated by Thomas Spengler. His original vision was to protect this special piece of land, and after working with a few passionate neighbors, he decided the best way to ensure the property remains protected in perpetuity was to donate it to WCLC.

The preserve is located adjacent to Nagawicka Lake and consists primarily of marsh and sedge meadow wetland communities. Protecting this land and water is important not only to preserve the native species present but also for the health of Nagawicka Lake and the benefit of the surrounding community. Wetland protection can provide many large-scale benefits like wildlife habitat, clean drinking water, shoreline protection, recreation and education opportunities, and more.

We are extremely grateful to Thomas Spengler for the donation of this preserve and to all the neighbors of the Spengler Wetland Preserve who have been involved in its preservation. 
Prescribed Burning for Restoration
The Perfect Conditions

At WCLC, one of the most important tools in our stewardship toolbox is prescribed burning. This tool is critical in our region as many native plants depend on fire to survive. It is also used as an effective way to control invasive species, especially on a larger scale. Last fall provided us with the perfect conditions, so in partnership with burn professionals, we were able to burn approximately 35 acres of prairie, old field, and oak savanna communities on two separate preserves.
Our Meyer Preserve underwent a successful prescribed burn in November. This preserve has been highlighted in many of our communications for being made up of globally rare oak savannas and oak woodlands. It is also home to the state-threatened kittentail plant along with many rare or declining plant species and natural communities. The goal of this burn was to control invasive species and prepare the site for the seeding of native plants to aid in restoration as part of our Wisconsin Habitat Partnership Fund grant. WCLC received this grant in 2020, beginning a $100,000 project spanning over two years. We are extremely grateful to the WI Department of Natural Resources and US Fish & Wildlife Service for generously funding this restoration project.
Calhoun Creek Prairie is another preserve that saw a prescribed burn last fall. Located in the heart of New Berlin, this preserve is undergoing active annual management. Prairie was planted in sections of the preserve, and more prairie plantings are planned over the next few years. This burn will allow more native species to survive and thrive within this natural area.
Next on the prescribed burn list is the Davis Preserve. It's undergoing a $1.1 million wetland restoration project and will need fire soon to help us meet our performance standards.

With that being said, many of WCLC’s owned properties are in need of fire – and we’re going to make it happen. If you're interested in supporting our stewardship efforts, make a donation today.
Become a Land Steward
Spring Workdays

Can you believe that we are less than two months away from Spring? When beautiful wildflowers begin blooming across Waukesha County and the trees come back to life. It's also the perfect time to join us outdoors to remove invasive species like garlic mustard and dame's rocket.

We have eight workdays scheduled on three different preserves during the months of May and June, and we would love to have you join our volunteer team as a land steward to care for our special natural areas here in Waukesha County.

While we can't gather in large groups safely due to COVID-19, we still have work to do, and we still need your help! Sign up for a volunteer shift, and we will send you information (including online training) about your shift as the date approaches. Workdays are being filled on a first-come-first-filled basis.

Support Conservation in Your Community
WCLC Needs Your Help

Communities across the globe have been affected by COVID-19, and as a small nonprofit, WCLC has felt the effects of this pandemic. We may be a small team, but we have large goals when it comes to land and water protection, stewardship, and education in Waukesha County.

To continue our mission-driven work, WCLC depends on our donors - individuals, business, and corporate partners. Your support is a great way to highlight the difference you're making in the communities you live in and serve. Help us continue to maintain the unique natural areas and ecological features we are lucky to have here in Waukesha County. Your support will make a difference not only today but for many generations to come.

Learn more about our sponsorship opportunities here. We have options for businesses, corporations, and individuals starting at $500.
Other Ways to Give & Get Involved
Do you want to make an impact in our work?

There are many ways you can help us fulfill our mission of protecting and caring for environmentally significant land and water in Waukesha County for future generations: