Wildlands & Woodlands Website

Highstead works to inspire curiosity and build knowledge about plants and wooded landscapes in order to enhance life, preserve nature, and advance sound stewardship practices.

Join Highstead for Peter Picone Talk

Wildlife biologist Peter Picone will share his knowledge about enhancing habitats with experience drawn from professional and personal projects Saturday, June 11 at 10 a.m. Picone’s talk will cover topics including native plants and discouraging invasive, non-native plants. This practical, how-to oriented presentation will help landowners take the first step toward starting a project in their own yard.

RSVP as space is limited: rsvp@highstead.net or 203-938-8809. Click here for details.

Apply Now for Highstead’s Conservation Internship

Highstead is seeking Conservation Interns for Fall 2016. Interns will work with our Senior Conservationists to implement research, outreach, and policy projects that advance priority conservation initiatives. The paid internship will run 12 weeks, from September 26, 2016 to December 16, 2016. Ideal candidates will be recent graduates of a Bachelor’s or Master’s-level program with a demonstrated interest and enthusiasm for landscape ecology, conservation finance, land conservation, and forest policy. For more information about the internship and how to apply, click here.

Victor DeMasi Speaks at Highstead Open Day

Renowned lepidopterist Victor DeMasi spoke at Highstead’s annual Open Day May 7, delivering a talk titled, “Butterflies in My Backyard.” DeMassi explained how butterfly gardens can promote pollinator diversity and addressed the fate of butterflies in an environment shaped by climate change and invasive plant species. 

Before DeMasi’s talk, Ed Faison, Highstead Senior Ecologist, led a guided tour of the Highstead landscape and discussed 10 years of forest change seen on the property. .

The Highstead Spring Newsletter is Here!

The Spring 2016 Highstead newsletter is here, and in it you’ll find updates on the latest work being done at Highstead including:

  • The Harvard Forest Schoolyard Ecology Program
  • ALPINE (Academics for Land Protection in New England)
  • Highstead’s internship program
  • A new report on public conservation funding in New England
  • The Regional Conservation Partnership Handbook
  • An update on the Hudson to Housatonic (H2H) RCP

The Highstead newsletter is available in print and online. If you would like to receive it by email or regular mail, send a note with your preference to jcologgi@highstead.net.

Read the full newsletter here.

Highstead Welcomes New Senior Conservationist

Highstead is pleased to announce the hiring of a new Senior Conservationist, Spencer Meyer. His work will focus on developing conservation finance strategies to advance New England forest conservation.

“I’m thrilled to join the Highstead family,” he said. “I’ve long admired the work the Highstead team has done to advance forest conservation throughout New England and now I feel fortunate to join their mission.”

Prior to joining Highstead, Spencer held a dual appointment as a post-doc at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and as a NatureNet Fellow with The Nature Conservancy. Before that, Spencer spent 12 years in Maine, leading sustainable forestry partnerships between academic, conservation, industry, and public institutions.

Highstead Supports ALPINE’s First Charles H.W. Foster Award

Photo courtesy of Middlebury College

Supported in part by Highstead, Academics for Land Protection in New England (ALPINE) presented the newly established Charles H.W. Foster Award to Middlebury College Feb. 22 in Boston in recognition of the protection of it’s 2,100-acre Bread Loaf Campus in Vermont.

Middlebury College President Laurie Patton accepted the award on behalf of the college. This new award honors Charles H.W. Foster, the late conservation leader and mentor.

Learn more here.

RCP Handbook Released


A new handbook aimed at driving collaborative conservation in New England, New York, and beyond, has been released by Highstead and the RCP Network. The Regional Conservation Partnership (RCP) Handbook captures the experiences of RCPs to date and outlines 10 steps identified as important to RCP success. 

Building upon the knowledge gained from the 43 partnerships that are part of the RCP Network, the Handbook is organized around the three fundamental stages of RCP growth (Emerging, Maturing, and Conserving). 

The RCP Handbook is available digitally on the Wildlands and Woodlands website and hard copies can be requested by emailing blabich@highstead.net.