The 2023 meeting will be held at the Rushton Conservation Center (RCC) within Rushton Woods Preserve (RWPR), the premier preserve of Willistown Conservation Trust (WCT). WCT’s mission is to preserve and manage the open land, rural character, scenic, recreational, historic, agricultural, and natural resources of the Willistown area and nearby communities, and to share these unique resources with people of all ages and backgrounds to inspire, educate and develop a lifelong commitment to the land and the natural world.
Located less than 20 miles from the city of Philadelphia, RWPR is surrounded by nature preserves, Ridley Creek State Park and open space. RWPR lies within an Audubon Important Bird Area (IBA), offering a great opportunity for banding and allowing us to study the seasonal and long-term population patterns and species diversity of migratory and breeding birds. The Rushton Woods Banding Station (RWBS) was established within RWPR to contribute to continent-wide monitoring efforts and exemplifies the benefits of low-impact land management practices on bird populations. The RWBS also allows us to train committed volunteers in the basics of bird banding and creates a setting for responsible nature education and conservation outreach.
The 80-acre Rushton Woods Preserve is the crown jewel of our 3 nature preserves; it is where most of our nature education efforts occur and is the site of our sustainable, low impact community farm program. This program was established in 2008 and now feeds over 100 families and donates over 3,500 lbs of vegetables to the West Chester Food Cupboard annually. Rushton Farm is a CSA (community supported agriculture) that connects hundreds of people to the land each year through volunteer days, membership, and other community events.