The Western New York Land Conservancy calls the 131-acre Kenneglenn Nature Preserve the crown jewel of its protected lands.

The conservancy has an agreement in place to purchase a neighboring piece of land called “Mossy Point” that dwarfs Kenneglenn in size.  

"This is the donut hole, a 222-acre missing piece, of what will be an 1,100 acre protected forest along Hunters Creek," said Deputy Executive Director Jajean Rose-Burney.

Rose-Burney says they must come up with $1.6 million by the end of the year, and are currently at over $800,000.

The conservancy announced a $100,000 matching challenge gift this week from the Gallogly Family Foundation.

That'll put them over $1 million.

"What we want to do is maintain it as a forest. Maintain the wildlife, the diversity that's here, the birds, the butterflies, the trees, and make it a publicly accessible nature preserve so people can actually experience it and enjoy it," Rose-Burney said.

Rose-Burney says the conservancy will build year-round trails that will allow people to hike, snowshoe and cross country ski.

People will be able to appreciate large bitternut, red oak, and hickory trees and rare birds like the Louisiana Waterthrush.

"What we do here, protecting this forest, impacts everyone living downstream; water quality, wildlife habitat," Rose-Burney said.

Rose-Burney says one tangible benefit of the preservation of this land is less flooding. Hunters Creek goes into Buffalo Creek which goes into West Seneca, which has had quite a bit of flooding in the past few years.

He says if the forest is cut or the land is developed, it won't absorb as much water, meaning more heading to those already flood-prone areas.