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Where: At the center of the Westwoods forest, there remains 30 acres of land that is privately held. In 2018, after decades of communication with the owners, GLCT has a contract to purchase it for permanent conservation. The land is well-known to those who enjoy Westwoods trails. It is most directly accessed from the Three Corners Road entrance and is located just north of Lost Lake. It is crossed by the White Alternate, White Circle, Red Triangle, and Orange Circle Trails.
What: We call it the Missing Piece because it is the final, central, inholding in the forest. However, the value of this land extends far beyond filling in a hole on a property map. An intact, 1,000-acre forest along the Connecticut coast is an increasingly rare treasure. This forest is a refuge for interior forest birds, such as the hooded warbler and the wood thrush, in our increasingly developed area. Other woodland species pay a price when a forest is fragmented, including the eastern box turtle, which is now listed as a Species of Special Concern by the State of Connecticut DEEP. Westwoods also provides a natural filter for water flowing through Lost Lake, across Guilford’s shellfish beds, and into the Long Island Sound. Finally, we humans benefit greatly from this forest as well. From hikers and mountain bikers to birders and dog walkers, generations of people in our area have enjoyed the experience of this large and fascinating natural area located just a 1.5 miles from the Guilford Green.
Why: We must protect this land because opportunities like this come along so rarely. GLCT began purchasing land in Westwoods in 1968. We have been to the closing table nearly 30 times to buy individual pieces that add to the large central parcels owned by the State of Connecticut. Westwoods is the forest that Guilford built. Our community has stepped up time and time again to donate generously towards conservation acquisitions and now we have the opportunity, for $250,000, to protect the last 30 acres at the center of this special forest.
How: Donate now. Connect with GLCT on Facebook. Spread the word. Thank you!