Protect and care for environmentally significant land and water in Waukesha County for future generations
protect all available, environmentally
significant land and water in Waukesha County
Waukesha County Land Conservancy Preserves
Land protection can be accomplished in several ways:
Donating land to a land trust is one of the finest legacies anyone can leave their community. Landowners who donate land to a land trust receive an income tax deduction for the full market value of the land. The donation may reduce federal estate tax liabilities and will eliminate the responsibility of property taxes.
A voluntary legal agreement between the landowner and land trust or government agency. It protects the conservation values of a piece of land by permanently limiting its present and future uses. This allows the landowner to retain ownership and use of his/her property and can be established to protect all or part of a property that has significant agricultural, historic, scenic or wildlife habitat resources.
Sometimes, land trusts pay full value for land they consider highly significant and extremely threatened by development. Conservation-minded landowners who use this method to sell their land gain peace of mind knowing it will be protected.
prioritizing environmental significance
Unique, high quality, and/or outstanding natural features
Endangered, threatened, or rare species native to our area
Primary environmental corridors, natural areas, and critical species habitat
Wetlands, waterways, and bodies of water
Outstanding scenic value
Buffer areas to conservancy preserves of publicly owned land
caring for land & Water
We rely on our staff, board, volunteers, and contractors to steward the land through:
Burns are critical to maintaining lowland and wet prairies, savanna vegetation, sedge meadows, and marshes
Major brush control (forestry mowing, hand-cutting, herbicide)
Invasive species removal (spraying, pulling, etc.)
What You Can Do
There are countless ways you can help protect land and water. You can make a donation (however big or small), join our fundraiser events, or volunteer your time to steward one of our beautiful properties.
Be part of a passionate community of people determined to transform nature’s future. Your donation helps fund our mission and the most urgent on-the-ground conservation efforts to protect and restore our beautiful land, water, and wildlife. As a Waukesha County Land Conservancy member, you can make a difference in the community and know you are doing your part for our planet.
BY BECOMING A SPONSOR you will have the opportunity to showcase that your company is making a difference in our environment and in the communities you serve - the places your customers and employees live, work, and play!
BUSINESSES WILL BENEFIT BY creating a culture of supporting important environmental work and receiving valuable publicity for their efforts on our social media platforms, website, newsletter and bimonthly eNews.
The Waukesha County Land Conservancy’s Sponsorship Program is a great way for local businesses and individuals to give back to their community while helping us maintain the natural beauty, ecological integrity, and safe access to our preserves.
To reach our goals, the Waukesha County Land Conservancy depends on relationships with a variety of like-minded partners including agencies, institutions, local businesses and corporations. These relationships are vital to our work and success.
Connect with Nature
work alongside conservancy staff, partners and other volunteers to care for nature, and discover unique events, tours and activities in our community.
Volunteers are needed for stewardship, preserve monitoring, wildlife monitoring, photography, education & outreach, and more.
Some opportunities might include: removing invasive plants; conducting species inventories; annual preserve monitoring; hosting information tables for events; and nature/special event photography.
Waukesha County Land Conservancy's Adopt-A-Preserve program is the official coordination system for generous volunteer efforts to remove invasive species, trash, maintain trails, and sustain land for wildlife and public use spanning over 3,100 acres in Waukesha County. The Adopt-A-Preserve program helps preserve, protect, and care for the environmentally significant lands and waters for our community and generations to come.
WHY SHOULD YOU CONSIDER ADOPTING-A-PRESERVE?
create healthier and important habitat for local and rare wildlife;
build teamwork and collaboration within groups or businesses;
give back to your community;
fulfill volunteer hours, increase skillsets, and build experience;
explore the county you live or work in;
learn how to be a steward of Wisconsin’s beautiful landscapes and natural communities, to carry into your own yards and landscapes; and,
have fun in nature!
Hunt WCLC Preserves
The Waukesha County Land Conservancy uses hunting as a way to better manage land and wildlife in Waukesha County. Time spent outside in natural areas scouting the land for game and planning hunting trips are enjoyable pastimes and provide hunters and future hunters with the ability to enjoy this activity in the greater Milwaukee area. Many Wisconsin families and friend groups look forward to the season every year, to continue old traditions and begin some new. Especially in Waukesha County, deer populations can be harmful both ecologically and economically. High numbers of deer result in more frequent car accidents, harm to crops and landscape plants, as well as over-grazing of our native natural communities.
Hunting is open and allowed on a limited list of Waukesha County Land Conservancy preserves.
Open preserves for all hunting allow ethical-use gun and archery hunting of waterfowl, small game, turkey, big game, and trapping. Any hunters using these preserves must have hunting permits from the Wisconsin DNR and must follow hunting season regulations put forth by state and local governments. Hunters must remain within WCLC boundaries at all times or the proper authorities will be contacted.
The following are the ONLY preserves that allow all hunting:
Ottawa Wildlife Refuge (southern parcel ONLY - please only hunt here if you have the ability to use handheld GPS equipment to ensure you stay within WCLC boundaries at all times, a PDF map and GPS app recommendations can be provided when requested)
WCLC Hunting Policies
Hunters must harvest a doe on a Waukesha County Land Conservancy preserve to earn the right to harvest a buck.
Alcoholic beverages are strictly prohibited.
No motorized vehicles.
A maximum of one deer stand may be set up on the preserve per hunter.
Deer stands may be left up only for the time period you have permission to hunt. Only non-damaging deer stands may be used. No spikes or screw-in steps allowed. No stands shall be placed within 100 feet of a property boundary. Waukesha County Land Conservancy assumes no responsibility for lost or damaged stands. All stands must be removed by February 1st the following year, or Waukesha County Land Conservancy reserves the right to remove and dispose of said stands.
No cutting, clearing or breaking of vegetation. Building of ground blinds with vegetation is not permitted.
No baiting of deer or food plots allowed.
No fires, camping, littering (includes plastic flagging) or dumping of waste on the preserve.
Unnecessary shooting or shooting at targets is not allowed.
No hunting is allowed within 200-yard radius of any inhabited dwelling. All hunters must remain within WCLC property boundaries while hunting.
All local, state, federal laws and ordinances governing hunting activities, including obtaining all required government licenses must be observed.
Any non-compliance with the rules above will result in the proper authorities being contacted.
WCLC Hunting Lottery
The 2023 Season lottery winners have been chosen.
Check back in spring 2024 for the new application.