Grace Farms’ 80-acre site is a model of what can be achieved through the restoration and conservation of nature. Our founders restored the acreage into ten biodiverse native habitats, including meadows and woodlands, bringing back over 100 species of birds. We’ve also made ongoing efforts to conserve and protect over 2,000 mature trees on site, which absorb more than 130,000 pounds of carbon dioxide a year from the atmosphere, the greenhouse gas most responsible for global warning or climate change.
These instances are all part of an inspiring model for preserving and restoring wild on a regional, national, and global scale. It also demonstates how we can employ nature-based solutions as a cost-effective strategy to address climate change.
Conservation of Biodiversity
The progress we’ve made toward creating a biodiversity hotspot at Grace Farms alone is a testament to the impact our individual efforts can have.
Grace Farms' Native Meadows
Join Nature Initiative Director Mark Fowler for a digital tour of Grace Farms' native meadows.
Combating Transnational Environmental Crime
Our Nature Initiative has accelerated change through an interdisiplinary approach with our other initiatives and partners. Our unique model couples our Justice Initiative’s law enforcement expertise in combating human trafficking with our Nature Initiative’s conservation approach to train and build capacity to fight environmental crime, including global deforestation, a $20 billion criminal network fueled by exporting and possessing wild flora, timber, and animals.
Combating the Illegal Wildlife Trade: The Impact of Specialized Training
Nature Initiative Director Mark Fowler and Rod Khattabi, Chief Accountability Officer and Justice Initiative Director, discuss how their collaborative approach to combat wildlife trafficking is advancing the fight against global trafficking.
Strategic Partnership with Liberty Shared
Our partnership works to train national and international law enforcement agencies and NGOs to disrupt human and wildlife trafficking through investigative methodologies, data gathering and analysis management.
Our year-round and seasonal programming invites environmental leaders to Grace Farms, which helps to raise awareness on topics ranging from climate change to protecting endangered wildlife. We also offer a wide range of hands-on learning experiences. These programs aim to inspire a stewardship of nature – from cleaning up local watersheds to producing organic food on site for local families in need.
Exploring Connecticut with News 12
Nature Initiative Director Mark Fowler has been exploring biodiversity in Connecticut with News 12’s Road Trip Close to Home. Watch the videos and learn about the incredible nature in our own backyard.
Summer Birdwatching in Connecticut
Master Birder Frank Mantlik takes us on a virtual birdwatching journey along Grace Farms’ 80-acre preserve and throughout Connecticut.
Our Nature Initiative has raised awareness and accelerated change around some of our most intractable environmental issues, building an impactful model to ensure a sustainable future.
Species of birds have been identified at Grace Farms, an increase from 40 species in 2015, as a result of restoring our native meadows
Pounds of trash have been collected along Norwalk River and Five Mile River during our annual Source to Sound river clean ups
Pounds of carbon are sequestered from the atmosphere each year by trees on Grace Farms' property
Partnered with News 12 to explore Connecticut's wilderness as part of their Road Trip Close to Home program, encouraging people to experience nature and learn about biodiversity in Connecticut.
Joined the local and regional Pollinator Pathway initiative, a nation-wide movement that protects and establishes essential native habitats for pollinators, including bees and butterflies.
Established relationships to advocate for the preservation of open space and restoration of native habitats with organizations such as the Trust for Public Land and The Nature Conservancy. Launched a collaboration with the Justice Initiative to develop international training programs to combat environmental crimes.
Brought back the American Kestrel to Grace Farms by restoring native meadows and installing nesting boxes. The Kestrel, the smallest and most common falcon in North America, is beneficial to the environment and farmers due to its consumption of crop pests.
Collaborated with our Arts Initiative to invite contemporary artist Kysa Johnson to create an immersive installation, Landscape Continuum, as part of our Earth Day celebration.
Established year-round free nature programing for people of all ages, offering exploratory opportunities of the natural world within our 80-acre preserve.