The Nature Sanctuary Society of Western New York was founded in 1934 by Dr. William Prindle Alexander, in cooperation with the Buffalo Museum Of Science. While leading students on hikes into the woods, Dr. Alexander saw a future that troubled him.Jacqueline Courtney Swift, the society's President, talks about their history." He was teaching at the Museum Of Science, and he would take his students out, and he was finding less and less access for them. There was more private land being bought up, and so he became very concerned that they needed sanctuaries that would be protected for all time. "

The society is run completely by volunteers, and can only be accessed by it's members. While their policy may seem restrictive, it has prevented the society's preserves from falling prey to the same fate as much of the other wild spaces across the region.Jim Landau is one of the society's Preserve Custodians. " Once the secret is out on some of these places, they can be loved to death ! Suddenly you find candy wrappers, and pop cans and the like, the trail of effluvia that humanity leaves when it enthusiastically traipses in and out of a place too many weekends when it's nice."

The Clifford Furman Preserve Is The Society's Crown Jewel.
The Clifford Furman Preserve Is The Society's Crown Jewel.

That would truly be a loss to all. On a recent trip to the Society's crown jewel, the Clifford Furman Preserve, Orchids bloomed, birds sang, and the forest danced with light that was alive with Mother Nature's abundant gifts.Landau describes the experience. " The light is different, the temperature changes, it's cool , you're out of the heat and the sun. There are multiple sensory changes that go on, on the way into them, while you're out on them, and as you come back out into, quote, reality . "

Organizations like these should be inspiring to us all. Swift says it shows that every individual can make a difference in protecting our environment." With a burgeoning population, and there's more and more development globally, and for us who have a vision of these critical habitats that need protecting, we need to work harder than ever. "

Landau agrees ." Their not making any more of it, they're not making any more of it.." You have to take a stand, take some action, do something."

To find out how to become a member of the Nature Sanctuary Society Of WNY , visit their website here :