Supreme Court Tests Whether Conservation Land Can be Taxed
In Massachusetts, land used by a charitable organization qualifies for a tax exemption under state law. But a recent case in the town of Hawley, now going before the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, could have wide implications.
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Conservation for Its Own Sake
It would seem self-evident that a key goal of conservation is to protect land from the effects of too much human interference. Certainly that was Teddy Roosevelt’s vision a century ago when one the country’s best-known hunters became its most ardent conservationist.
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Reeling in Facts for Striper Conservation
In his op-ed Conservation is Essential to Save the Striper (Vineyard Gazette, Oct. 31), author Dick Russell suggests that recreational and commercial fishermen stand at odds when it comes to striped bass conservation. He claims that commercial striped bass fishermen from Massachusetts and menhaden fishermen from Virginia are obstacles in the way of stronger protections for striped bass.
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Strock Family Gifts Lagoon Beachfront to Land Bank
The 1,000-foot crescent of sand that lies south of the Lagoon Pond Bridge came as an early Christmas present for the Martha's Vineyard Land Bank, where outright gifts of land are rare.
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Eating the Way to Conservation

Imagine sheep grazing at Wasque Point on Chappaquiddick, or goats and cattle browsing the greenery at Long Point Wildlife Refuge.

It’s not a long shot if farmers and conservation groups can manage land together, says David R. Foster, an ecologist and director of the Harvard Forest.

“This is a fabulous time for agriculture and there’s a wonderful opportunity for agriculture, land owners and conservationists to come together in a way that they haven’t previously,” Mr. Foster said in an interview at his home this week.

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Woods Preserve Remains Wild

The family of the late Edwin Newhall (Bob) Woods has gifted 500 acres of rare and unspoiled oak forest, freshwater wetlands and frost bottom in West Tisbury and Chilmark to The Nature Conservancy, the conservancy announced early this week. The gift creates permanent protection for the heart of one of the most significant natural areas on the Vineyard.

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Inviting Nature Into Your Own Backyard

Residential developments, historically perceived as a threat to wildlife habitats, are taking on a positive role through a new Nature Conservancy program called the Vineyard Habitat Network.

Residences that can actually foster healthy habitats? It’s not only possible, it’s being done already, habitat officials say.

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New State Forest Designation Protects Natural Habitat

From a failed heath hen reservation to a red pine plantation gone wrong, the Manuel F. Correllus State Forest has weathered its share of management experiments.

In 2012, the forest’s plants and trees can breathe easy, as the forest recently has been designated as a state reserve by the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR).

David Foster, Harvard University forest director and historian for the Correllus state forest, said the designation has guaranteed a better future of the forest.

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Vineyard, Nantucket Teach, Learn Conservation Lessons

After coming from Nantucket to the Vineyard on Wednesday, Cormac Collier first noticed the trees lining the roads that wind through Chilmark.

“We took a little tour on the western side of the Island, and the one thing I was most amazed about was . . . the forests that are here. We definitely have some similarities in terms of geological formations and vegetation, but the amount of mature forests that are here is pretty remarkable. It’s definitely nice to come here, because we don’t have forests like you,” he said.

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Lobster Fishery Confronts Major Crisis; Officials Plan Strict Conservation Limits
With the American lobster in short supply in Vineyard waters, the state and federal governments are in the early stages of considering new minimum sizes and catch limits. Hearings are planned for later this summer.
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