Judy & Dudley Williams: Heroes for West Mountain
Judy and Dudley Williams moved to Plainfield 15 years ago. They were the type of newcomers a little town like Plainfield could only dream of. As people who are inspired by the wonders of nature and the importance of healthy ecosystems, they are enamored with the nature of Western Massachusetts and its wildlife diversity. As a result, they have worked hard to make sure that the critical land and wildlife habitat surrounding Mass Audubon’s West Mountain Wildlife Sanctuary is protected. The West Mountain Wildlife Sanctuary, which also abuts the 8,000 acre Dubuque State Forest, is home to an abundance of wildlife, including black bears, bobcats, porcupines, moose, barred owls, fishers, and wood ducks, to name a few.
The story of the Williams’ generous efforts to expand the protected land base at West Mountain began in 1995 when they conveyed a conservation restriction to Mass Audubon on 217 acres of their farmstead adjacent to Mass Audubon’s sanctuary at West Mountain. The Williams next donated a conservation restriction (CR) in 2000 to Mass Audubon on a contiguous 80 acre parcel. In 2002, another 20 acres were protected by them with a CR to Mass Audubon. Most recently in 2007, the Williams gifted 30 acres of important land to Mass Audubon further extending this corridor of protected forest and open space surrounding West Mountain.
In total, the Williams individual efforts have protected nearly 350 acres of critical wildlife habitat! Their conservation maneuvers have increased the total amount of Mass Audubon land protected at West Mountain to nearly 2,000 acres! Today, they continue to work with Mass Audubon to cultivate new land protection projects in the area. Thanks to their past and present efforts, the rich wildlife biodiversity that surrounds West Mountain will remain for everyone to enjoy.