You can create the Becker Preserve by protecting a spectacular and storied ninety-seven-acre property overlooking a broad valley in southeastern Erie County. The land includes a portion of a hiking trail that traverses the entire region. Water that seeps from its headwater hillsides form Cazenovia Creek further downstream. It is also an important part of the WNY Wildway, a proposal to protect and connect our region’s largest remaining forests. Right now, you can donate and ensure the land is protected forever.
Part of the Western New York Wildway
The WNY Wildway will connect the vast forests of northern Pennsylvania to the Great Lakes, through to the Finger Lakes, the Adirondacks, and beyond. It will form part of the Eastern Wildway which runs all the way from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico. The Wildway will allow plants and animals to roam across the land as they once did, to move as climate changes, and to expand their ranges and ensure their survival. It will allow wildlife that have disappeared from our region to return home. At the Becker forest, large pileated woodpeckers fly from tree to tree, black bear meander in the understory, and frogs and toads sing on warm nights.
Running through the Becker forest are several headwater streams, all tributaries of Cazenovia Creek. These streams flow through steep, rocky ravines and down a series of scenic waterfalls. Sections of the forest are remarkably mature, with very large, old sugar maples and beech. By preserving this forest, you will protect the Niagara River
The Conservation Trail also makes its way through a portion of the property. This popular 177-mile hiking trail extends from the Pennsylvania border into Canada and was envisioned by the trailblazer Mabel James, the great aunt of the current owner of the Becker forest. An additional trail on the property, known as the Becker Loop, connects to the main Conservation Trail.
Donate and Protect the Land
Thanks to the generosity of Linda Ruckdeschel, the current owner who plans to donate the forest to the Land Conservancy, we need only raise $105,000 to cover acquisition costs and long-term stewardship.
By donating today, you can make sure the Becker forest will always provide a home for incredible wildlife, it will always filter our drinking water, and its trail will always be open to the community.