Introducing: The Nature Conservancy

The Wisconsin Chapter of The Nature Conservancy protects and restores coastal habitat and provides science based solutions as a collaborative partner on coastal projects.


The Nature Conservancy


Who Are They?

The Nature Conservancy (TNC) is a global environmental nonprofit with the mission to conserve and protect land and water. TNC has a chapter in Wisconsin that works towards efforts to protect Wisconsin’s lands and waters, transform how people use land and water in a way that is more sustainable, and inspires people to take action for nature. The Chapter’s work occurs across the state, from the Baraboo Hills to the coastal boreal forest in Door County.

How Does the Wisconsin Chapter of TNC Support Coastal Resilience?

TNC in Wisconsin supports the development of more resilient coastal communities by protecting and restoring coastal habitat and providing science based solutions as a collaborative partner on coastal projects. A strategic priority in Wisconsin is working to incorporate diversity, equity, inclusion and environmental justice to preserve outdoor spaces for all.  

Protecting Land

TNC protects coastal land in Wisconsin through purchases and conservation easements. These lands can become TNC Preserves or donated. For example, 362 acres of coastal boreal forest in Door County were donated to the State of Wisconsin in 2019, and 150 acres of coastal wetland and prairie at the Chiwaukee Prairie in 2015. This protection is critical in preserving globally significant coastal habitats and protecting rare and endangered species. For instance, the 362 acres in Door County will double the size of the Bailey’s Harbor Boreal Forest and Wetlands State Nature Area, a globally important wetland for migratory birds and rare species like the dwarf lake iris and the Hine’s emerald dragonfly.

Some TNC coastal preserves include Shivering Sands, North Bay-MudLake, and Kangaroo Lake preserves in Door County. 

The Nature Conservancy also partners with the University of Wisconsin Arboretum and  Journey North to provide opportunities to engage community members in citizen science by reporting native plant, bird, and butterfly species and behavior in the local area. This increased observation based science allows TNC to better understand the ways that critical species occupy and utilize land parcels and determine priorities for restoration or preservation efforts. 

Flood Resilience Project

TNC and a group of partners launched the East River Collaborative (ERC) in 2020 to help communities work together to assess how prepared they are for a wetter future with bigger storms resulting in flooding and water quality issues. ERC is a community-driven approach to flood resilience planning in the East River Watershed, primarily in Brown County, Wisconsin. The East River flows into Green Bay and has a history of big flood events. For more information, check out the ERC website.

Climate Resilience Mapping

The University of Wisconsin, the Wisconsin Initiative on Climate Change Impacts (WICCI) and Wisconsin Nature Conservancy have partnered to develop an online mapping tool to document climate resilient lands and “climate corridors” across the U.S. The Nature Conservancy’s Resilient and Connected Network project is the first effort of its kind. With these lands mapped, projects can be prioritized to connect parcels with climate resilient features to promote habitat connectivity and restore valuable ecosystem services that protect against flooding and erosion. 

Connect with the Wisconsin Chapter of the Nature Conservancy

Visit the Wisconsin Chapter website for the latest news and to contact TNC.

Subscribe to the Wisconsin Nature News email newsletter.

Volunteer with Wisconsin’s TNC chapter or explore the online map to visit a Wisconsin preserve managed by the Nature Conservancy.