Fischer Old-Growth Forest
Majestic, magical, inspirational, with trees over 150 feet tall, this site is a sanctuary in every sense of the word. The best of the few remaining examples of pre-settlement forest in the region, this old-growth forest is notable not only for the extreme size of many individual trees but also for the very high number of tree species - at least 23 - of canopy size. Among these is yellow oak (Quercus muehlenbergii), a locally rare species. The preserve totals 41.8 acres, with almost 30 acres of old-growth forest. Almost every tree was marked for cutting. The property was acquired by Cotton-Hanlon Inc., a company that manages forested lands for timber harvest, with the intent to log it. Saving this old-growth forest involved years of negotiations between Cotton-Hanlon and the Cornell Plantations Natural Areas Committee. Acquired in 1997, the Fischer Old-Growth Forest is named to honor Richard B. Fischer (1919-2005), professor of environmental education, for his delight in natural history and his tenacity and can-do attitude toward environmental protection, which he shared with his many students.