Chesterton Tribune



Heinze Trust acquires 165 acres next to Heron Rookery

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Shirley Heinze Land Trust is announcing its acquisition of 165 acres along the Little Calumet River in Pine Township.

The acquisition of the property--located south of and contiguous to Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore's 460-acre Heron Rookery site--creates a block of preserved land of some 625 acres on the Little Calumet River.

“This is the single largest acquisition in our 35-year history and it nearly doubles our total holdings in the Little Calumet River corridor, bringing them to 320 acres,” said Shirley Heinze Executive Director Kristopher Krouse said in a statement released today. “The Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelly Foundation, Save the Dunes, the Indiana Bicentennial Nature Trust, and other partners were integral to this achievement.”

“At the end of 2014, the Indiana Bicentennial Nature Trust designated the Little Calumet River Corridor as a special conservation area for land acquisition funding,” the statement said. “Since then, Shirley Heinze Land Trust and other partner organizations have focused acquisition efforts there. The Porter County Izaak Walton League has also acquired land east of the Heron Rookery, and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources has established the 1,250-acre Reynolds Creek Game Bird Habitat Area on land transferred from the Department of Corrections.”

“The total amount of land protected by Shirley Heinze Land Trust is now 1,925 acres,” Krouse added. “Our goal is to bring that number up to 3,000 acres within the next five years. As we work to protect these special places that provide wildlife habitat and enhance water and air quality, we also look to make them accessible to the public for education and recreational enjoyment.”

Shirley Heinze Land Trust has been protecting natural land in the southern Lake Michigan watershed of Indiana since 1981. More than 1,900 acres in Lake, Porter, and LaPorte counties have been preserved for the public's benefit. Shirley Heinze nature preserves feature significant scenic and ecological value, and most are open to the public for hiking and enjoying nature, while five of its properties--Cressmoor Prairie, Seidner Dune & Swale, John Merle Coulter Preserve, Barker Woods, and Ambler Flatwoods--have been dedicated to the people of Indiana as state nature preserves.

For more information on the work and nature preserves of Shirley Heinze Land Trust, or to learn about the upcoming 35th Anniversary Benefit, visit or or call (219) 242-8558.



Posted 4/19/2016





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