What We Do
Genesee Land Trust preserves and protects natural lands and waterways that enhance the quality of life in the Greater Rochester region – providing wildlife habitat, locally grown food, and connections to nature – for everyone.
Genesee Land Trust owns and manages nature preserves across the region for the public to enjoy for generations to come. In addition, we have partnered with towns to create nature parks also open to the public.
Volunteer preserve stewards help monitor each preserve and coordinate the care and management of trails, help manage and enhance natural habitats, and assist with events and other activities on the preserves.
All are welcome to experience and explore these protected places.
Landowners work with Genesee Land Trust to conserve their beloved land with a permanent agreement known as a conservation easement. Working lands, such as farmland, often use this tool to restrict future subdivision and development so as to continue to be farmed. Natural lands protected by conservation easement remain undeveloped while being cared for by the private landowner.
When it accepts a conservation easement, Genesee Land Trust takes on a responsibility to monitor and enforce the terms of the agreement permanently.
Connecting to Nature
Nature and the out of doors, like clean water, is important to our quality of life. Genesee Land Trust creates new trails on its preserves, partners to develop new nature parks and public trails, hosts walks and events on natural lands, and facilitates programs on the land for youth and families.
Studies have shown that people who exercise outdoors – walking, jogging, or biking through natural areas – feel healthier and happier than people who exercise indoors. Children who have the chance to experience nature, whether in a garden or in a swamp, during their childhood are calmer and more focused. We all need nature!
Where We Work
Located along Lake Ontario and centered on the City of Rochester, Genesee Land Trust serves Monroe and Wayne Counties and portions of adjacent counties. This region is a mix of urban, suburban, and rural communities.
An area of approximately 1.3 million acres, the residents of the region were historically focused on the significant water resources of our region – the water power of the Genesee River and its three waterfalls in the City of Rochester; the Erie Canal that crossed fertile farming communities and created prosperous canal towns; and the south shore of Lake Ontario, our North Coast.
Genesee Land Trust’s region touches the service areas of neighboring land trusts:
- Finger Lakes Land Trust, based in Ithaca, serving the Finger Lakes watershed of 12 counties,
- Genesee Valley Conservancy, based in Geneseo, serving the Genesee River Valley and watershed counties south to the Pennsylvania border,
- Western New York Land Conservancy, based in East Aurora, serving the 8 western counties of New York, and
- Mendon Foundation and Henrietta Foundation serving their respective towns.
Our Areas of Focus
Protecting the North Coast
Creating a band of protected critical habitat and countryside along the shore of Lake Ontario – a unique and vulnerable area with scenic views, important habitats, and waterways.
Connecting to Nature
Linking families to nature across the region. Finding new community conservation opportunities in and across rural, suburban, and urban neighborhoods.
Local Farms and Food
Protecting family farms on some of the best soils in the world. Working lands add to our community’s heritage, economic prosperity, and local food sources.
Habitats of Excellence
Preserving the best and the uncommon natural habitats in the region to provide havens for birds, butterflies, and other wildlife now and into the future.