Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy

Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy news and reports.

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Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy
The Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy conserves natural land and open
space -- including forests, wetlands, meadows, agricultural lands, and places of
scenic beauty -- to provide habitat for wildlife and to enrich the lives of people.

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SMLC is a participating member of SEMIWILD as a Protector.





Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy's
Preserve Dedication Days

Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy is pleased to announce the dedication of three beautiful and special places that were conserved thanks to you! We are also excited to announce the public grand opening of all three as well as the new Superior Greenway Nature Trail later this year. We look forward to celebrating with you!

Water lilies on Slack Lake at Lost Lake Nature Preserve.
Photo by Charles Scott

Sibley Prairie Nature Preserve -
West Prairie

Preserve dedication and public grand opening
Saturday, August 29, 2015
2:00 pm - 4:30 pm

Location: West Prairie site; No parking onsite
Parking: Faith Lutheran Church (25402 Arsenal Rd., Brownstown, MI 48134) to meet up with event shuttle starting at 2:00 pm.

Superior Greenway Nature Trail &
Jack R. Smiley Nature Preserve

Preserve and trail dedication and public grand opening
Sunday, September 20, 2015
2:00 pm - 4:30 pm

Location and parking: 3040 North Prospect Road, Ypsilanti, MI 48198 – Park on Cherry Hill Rd.

Lost Lake Nature Preserve
Preserve dedication and public grand opening and annual Fall Frolic hike.
Sunday, October 18 , 2015
2:00 pm - 4:30 pm

Location and parking: 10546 Lost Lake (Off Baldwin Rd.) Grand Blanc, MI 48473; Follow event signs to park along dirt road

For more about these events, please see the event calendar below or contact us at / 734-484-6565

Special note to interested sponsors - please click here for a copy of the SMLC Preserve Dedication Days Sponsor Flier. If you have any questions about sponsorships for these events, please contact Jill Lewis, Executive Director at or 734-484-6565.

Give to SMLC

"Southeast Michigan: a beautiful place where people and nature coexist in healthy, sustainable balance."

SMLC's vision statement expresses how we feel about this special place we call home. Preserving natural areas and farmlands is good for all of us. SMLC is doing our part: more than 3,400 acres have been protected in this region through our efforts. You too can do your part by giving to the SMLC "We Care" Campaign.

Spring Trillium by Charles Scott
Spring Trillium in LeFurge Woods Nature Preserve, Superior Greenway, Washtenaw County.
Photo by Charles Scott

To make a safe and secure online donation to SMLC, click here.

Donate to SMLC

To download a printable form you can mail to our office along with your personal check made payable to "Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy" click here. 

You can continue the momentum and help SMLC become even stronger:

Click here to read SMLC's latest appeal letter (PDF)

Click here to read our Spring 2015 Landmarks newsletter (PDF)

Kroger Community Rewards

You can support SMLC every time you use
your Kroger Plus Card.

It's easy to sign up!

Click here to link or re-link
your Kroger Plus Card to SMLC


Welcome Erick Elgin
SMLC's new Stewardship and Outreach Specialist

Erick Elgin
Erick Elgin

Erick Elgin is Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy’s (SMLC) new Stewardship and Outreach Specialist. His role with the Conservancy is to steward SMLC’s 17 nature preserves and 15 conservation easements and to engage the public in SMLC’s activities and events. As part of his position, Erick will be creating and implementing preserve management plans, conducting property site assessments, and monitoring conservation easements. He will also organize outreach events and coordinate SMLC’s volunteers.

Erick has experience with habitat restoration in terrestrial, wetland, and lake ecosystems in both rural and urban settings. He grew up on a small farm in east-central Minnesota and earned his B.S. degree in natural resource management from the University of Minnesota, Crookston. As an undergraduate, he worked with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and two restoration companies. Following graduation, Erick worked at the University of Notre Dame where he led a large-scale early detection monitoring survey for aquatic invasive species.

Erick recently earned his MSc. in ecology at the University of Calgary, where he studied shallow lakes ecosystems. Specifically he investigated how differing organisms affect water clarity in shallow lakes within an agricultural landscape.

Erick has a long standing commitment to conservation and is excited to join the SMLC team. Please help us give him a warm welcome!

Good News

Sibley Prairie Saved!

A view of lakeplain prairie in Brownstown Township.
Photo by Charles Scott.

Michigan’s lakeplain prairie used to cover 16,000 acres most of which were located in Monroe and Wayne counties.  The rich soil was coveted, first for agricultural use and later for development.  Now less than 1% of Michigan prairie remains.

The largest prairie remnant is located in Brownstown Township, Wayne County and conservationists and scientists agree – it needs to be saved.  The Nature Conservancy has categorized the Sibley Prairie as globally imperiled and critically imperiled in Michigan.  If we want to save what is left we need to act now.

Thanks to you! SMLC successfully reached our Sibley Prairie Land Protection Project goal of $150,000.  We are deeply grateful to The Carls Foundation and the John A. Woollam Foundation for their matching gifts.  SMLC will use the funds to help with public access and stewardship management for our Sibley Preserve Nature Preserve sites.


Lost Lake Nature Preserve Saved!

Lost Lake Nature Preserve Photo by wendy Pellerito
A view of Lost Lake Nature Preserve from a hot air ballon. Photo by Wendy Pellerito.

SMLC received word in February that the ET Rover Pipeline is no longer planned to route through SMLC’s Lost Lake Nature Preserve.  This beautiful regional natural treasure is located in northern Oakland and southern Genesee counties.  The pipeline had been slated to run the entire length of the extensive southern boundary including passage through sensitive natural areas.  ET Rover publicized that they reached a deal with the Vector pipeline owned by DTE and will not create a new pipeline the last 110 miles of their multistate line.  Instead they will link up with an existing Vector pipeline.

SMLC and our partner, Six Rivers Land Conservancy, who holds the conservation easement on the property, advocated against the pipeline being placed at Lost Lake or any other conservation area.  SMLC is very grateful to everyone who worked on this issue and helped bring it to a successful conclusion.

The 2014 Red Barn Bash was a huge success.

Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy extends our deep appreciation to all of the event sponsors, donors and volunteers – Thank You! – we all had a great time.
See you at the next one.

Drawing by John Copley, Painting by Wendy Pellerito

SMLC Supporters

Prairie remnant found in the West Prairie Site addition to the Sibley Prairie Nature Preserve.                                                     Photo by Jill Lewis.

SMLC in the News

Acquisition Success!!

SMLC recently acquired the newest addition to our Sibley Prairie Nature Preserve. The 39-acre West Prairie Site was acquired in July after a year's worth of effort, and now this beautiful property will forever be protected. To read more about the project and the property's unique characteristics, click here.


Slack Lake (shown here) is one of two lakes in the newly acquired Lost Lake Nature Preserve.                                  Photo by Jill Lewis.

$1.1 Million Acquisition: Lost Lake Nature Preserve

Partnership protects 538 acres in Genesee and Oakland Counties!

In August 2013, Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy purchased our 16th nature preserve with help from an angel donor who provided the $1.1 million purchase funds. SMLC partnered with Six Rivers Land Conservancy, who now holds a conservation easement on the property. The new Lost Lake Nature Preserve is a beautiful place and protects two pristine lakes, unique wetlands and natural areas. To read more about the acquisition success, click here to view the Press Release.

Map of Lost Lake Nature Preserve


To view articles about the new Nature Preserve, click a link below.

Oakland Press on Lost Lake Nature Preserve

SMLC's next step is to create a Management Plan that will guide the stewardship of the Preserve's natural resources while incorporating future public access.

If you are excited about this Nature Preserve and would like to get involved with SMLC call 734.484.6565 or email us at

DTE Group Photo
DTE Volunteers did an AWESOME job removing invasive buckthorn at LeFurge Woods Nature Preserve in 2014. Spring and summer is a great time to combat invasive species.
Photo by Jason Martinez


SMLC Stewardship News

Volunteers can help SMLC in many important ways and you can keep the momentum going! Groups or individuals are welcome to pitch in - please let us know how you would like to help.

If you would like to volunteer with SMLC
call 734.484.6565 or email Erick Elgin, Stewardship and Outreach Specialist: to find out how you can help.

Be sure your email address is on the SMLC Events email list to get event notification of upcoming conservancy news, events, and volunteer opportunities. It's easy, just send an email to:

(Note that SMLC never gives or sells personal info to anyone).

Local Chapter News

Superior Land ConservancySuperior

SMLC's Superior Township Chapter is the new name for the Superior Land Conservancy. You can read more about this in SMLC's Fall Landmarks newsletter located on the About Page.

See the Calendar of Events below for Superior Township Chapter and SMLC events, posted as they are scheduled.

For more information about SMLC's Superior Township Chapter, click here or contact Brenda Baker at or Bill Secrest at (734) 482-5957

Downy WoodpeckerLots of Downy Woodpeckers make Superior Township their home. Photo by Charles Scott


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SMLC on Facebook - check us out and "like" us.

Sign up for SMLC Events, keep up with the latest SMLC news, and hear stories about the benefit of SMLC's work at our new Facebook page. If you are new to Facebook, signup is free. If you are already on Facebook, you know what to do - "like" us and see what's new at SMLC.

To see events in the calendar below, click Week / Month / Agenda tabs.

Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy  |  8383 Vreeland Road, Superior Township, MI 48198  |  (734) 484-6565
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