The Highstead land in Redding, Connecticut, is a living expression of the Wildlands & Woodlands vision and exemplifies our commitment to conservation, science, and stewardship. It comprises more than 100 beautiful acres of undisturbed woodland habitat as well as fields, meadows, and wetlands. This diverse landscape is connected by a 1.5-mile trail that reveals the natural and human forces that shape it.
The Highstead grounds have been intentionally managed for land preservation and research, including leaving much of the site intentionally unmanaged. Visitors experience first-hand how both ecologically stewarded land and unmanaged landscapes support and celebrate the aesthetic beauty of the landscape, the diversity of plants and animals, and the surprises of the changing seasons. Walking among the grounds evokes feelings of compassion for our planet and inspires reconnection with the natural world.
A place for study and appreciation
Highstead offers an array of resources and programs to enhance the visitor experience, including:
- Our educational program, which comprises talks, demonstrations, workshops, and guided walks for visitors, collaborators, and members
- Our brochures and printed materials, which complement the trails and property and make it easy for visitors to take self-guided tours of the grounds
- Our timber-frame headquarters, which includes a greenhouse, a library, an herbarium, and ample space for workshops and lectures
A hub for science and ecological research
Highstead conducts long-term monitoring and research both locally and regionally; hosts and partners with academic institutions, researchers, and scholars; and synthesizes ecological topics to inform land management and educate the public. We conduct extensive ecological surveys and landscape history research on our own property and beyond. Projects include:
- Forest history and change at Highstead
- Wildlife monitoring
- Wildlands and Woodlands stewardship science
- White-tailed deer and southwestern Connecticut forests
- Moose, deer and central New England forests