September 23, 2015
For Immediate Release
Thames Talbot Land Trust launched the “Soaring Higher: Hawk Cliff and Beyond Campaign”
PORT STANLEY, Ontario – The Thames Talbot Land Trust (TTLT) announced the launch of the
Soaring Higher: Hawk Cliff and Beyond Campaign in a media conference on September 17th 2015 at 11:00 a.m. at the Kettle Creek Golf and Country Club in Port Stanley, Ontario. This event featured the announcement of the campaign, highlights of the property and TTLT’s restoration plans.
Hawk Cliff Campaign Director, Stan Caveney, shared the importance of this spectacular property with those in attendance, emphasizing the rarity of some of the species and habitat types found at Hawk Cliff Woods. Dr. Caveney shared the TTLT’s plans to make this incredible property even more special with the audience, highlighting planned increases to the interior forest and the creation of native plant meadows. Dr. Caveney also announced a major donation received in support of the campaign. Eric and Karen Auzins of London committed to a $250,000.00 donation towards Hawk Cliff Woods when the campaign was in its infancy, ensuring that that Thames Talbot Land Trust was able to move forward with this ambitious project.
TTLT Executive Director, Suzanne McDonald Aziz, provided an update on the $1,600,000.00 campaign. To date the TTLT has secured 77% of the campaign total, this demonstrates the importance of this historic site to our community and the confidence in the TTLT as an organization. TheSoaring Higher: Hawk Cliff and Beyond Campaign is structured to secure the funds to secure and restore Hawk Cliff Woods but also raises funds to ensure that the TTLT is able to continue securement and conservation work on other ecologically significant lands. Those wishing to help the TTLT protect Hawk Cliff Woods can visit www.hawkcliffwoods.ca to make a donation.
TTLT Board President, Linda McDougall, announced the public campaign launch on September 19 at 12:30 at Hawk Cliff Woods and invited anyone who would like to see this spectacular property and learn more about the restoration activities planned to attend.
“Like the incredible birds that soar above the cliffs, we are soaring higher in this campaign. In addition to acquiring Hawk Cliff Woods, our goal is to increase our Opportunities Fund and the Jane Bowles Stewardship Fund. Enhancing these funds will help us to continue protecting exceptional natural areas.”
- Suzanne McDonald Aziz, TTLT Executive Director
“Protection of Hawk Cliff represents a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the Thames Talbot Land Trust. The entire north shoreline of Lake Erie is an important wildlife corridor for birds and insects during the fall migration, and Hawk Cliff's wooded ravines and meadows provide an important stopover site for them to feed and rest during their long journey south.”
- Stan Caveney, Hawk Cliff campaign Director
“It means a lot to us to know that under the care of TTLT this land would be preserved not only for the viewing of migrations but for the preserving of the habitat of the various species at risk that make their home there.”
- Eric and Karen Auzins, Hawk Cliff Campaign Lead Individual Donors
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About Hawk Cliff Woods:
Hawk Cliff is well known to bird enthusiasts who visit the area annually to view the hawk migration. The area is also an important stop along the migration route for the Monarch butterfly, a species of Special Concern. Hawk Cliff Woods is one of the largest remaining deep interior forests in Elgin County. This special place is identified as critical habitat for the Endangered Acadian Flycatcher. Hawk Cliff Woods provides nesting habitat for other Species at Risk including Bank Swallow (Threatened), as well as Eastern Wood-Pewee, Louisiana Waterthrush and Wood Thrush (all three of Special Concern). Rare trees such as Butternut and American Chestnut (both Endangered) are found here. The understorey of the ravine slopes and moist bottomland in this mature beech/maple woodland contains a diversity of ferns, including the Rare Broad Beech Fern and the Creeping Fragile Fern.
About Thames Talbot Land Trust:
The Thames Talbot Land Trust is registered charity dedicated to the protection of lands and waters having significant natural, recreational, scenic, historical, or agricultural value. Our name reflects the geographical context and cultural heritage of the lands along the Thames River and historic Talbot Trail. Our area of focus includes Middlesex, Elgin, Perth, and Oxford counties. As of May 2015, The Land trust owns 12 conservation properties and holds one conservation easement, protecting more than 1,000 acres (400 hectares) of land in total.
For more information, please contact:
Suzanne McDonald Aziz
Thames Talbot Land Trust Executive Director