Peconic Land Trust Acquires 29.8 Acres on the Great Hog Neck Peninsula for New Preserve: Harold A. Reese Preserve

December 4, 2020

The woodlands and wetlands, adjacent to the Trust’s Wolf Preserve, will provide environmental protection in this sensitive area of the Peconic Bay Estuary.

The Peconic Land Trust (the Trust) announced today that it has acquired 29.8 acres on the Great Hog Neck Peninsula in Southold, New York. The new preserve – the Harold A. Reese Preserve – is adjacent to the Peconic Land Trust’s Wolf Preserve, and increases the area to over 50 acres that will now be available for passive recreation, while also providing climate change resiliency, wildlife habitat, and groundwater protection in this part of the Peconic Bay Estuary.

The acquisition was completed given the cooperation and foresight of the property owner, Harold A. Reese, Jr., on behalf of the Reese family, who sold the property to the Trust as a bargain sale* on November 25, 2020. The new preserve is named after the family’s late father, Harold A. Reese.

“Having been in real estate development on the North Fork for over 50 years, our family saw this property as an important opportunity to preserve land in an ecologically sensitive part of the North Fork and to recognize our father’s important contribution to the community. We are pleased to have been able to work with the Peconic Land Trust to see this land be open, available and contributing to the natural resources of the North Fork,” said Harold Reese, Jr. at the closing.


The property, which has been owned by the Reese family since the mid-1960s, is located between North Bayview and Main Bayview Roads, and adjacent to the east of the Trust’s Wolf Preserve. The area, which is predominantly woodland, with a 1-acre area of fresh water wetlands, is included on the Peconic Estuary Program’s Critical Land Protection list. Through conservation, the property will contribute to climate change resiliency by providing:

  • Continued carbon sequestration based on the property’s significant woodlands
  • Viable and sustainable ecosystems that will support a wide array of plant and animal species
  • Adding to the existing, interconnected network of protected lands and waters to enable flora and fauna to adapt
  • Undisturbed groundwater recharge for our sole source aquifer

“This is an extraordinary opportunity to protect and conserve a significant amount of land in the Great Hog Neck area. We thank the Reese family for recognizing the importance of conserving this environmentally sensitive area of the Peconic Bay Estuary and for working with our team, led by Project Manager Holly Sanford,” said John v.H. Halsey, President of the Peconic Land Trust.

Currently, the Trust is improving its Wolf Preserve with a series of accessible trails – and has plans to expand that project within the newly protected Harold A. Reese Preserve.

Acquisition of the Reese property was made possible by the Reese family’s choice of a bargain sale*, and also by accessing a line-of-credit provided by an anonymous donor. The Department of Environmental Conservation has expressed an interest in partnering with the Peconic Land Trust to protect the property and may acquire a conservation easement. Proceeds from sale of an easement to the state would enable the Trust to repay the funds provided by the line-of-credit.

*Bargain Sale: A sale of land or a conservation easement to a qualified organization at less than fair market value. The difference between the fair market value and the bargain sale price may provide the seller with a charitable income tax deduction.

About the Peconic Land Trust

Founded in 1983, Peconic Land Trust conserves Long Island’s working farms, natural lands, and heritage. Since its inception, the nonprofit Trust has worked conscientiously with landowners, communities, municipalities, partner organizations, and donors, to conserve over 13,000 acres of land on Long Island. The Trust’s professional staff carries out the necessary research and planning to identify and implement alternatives to outright development. While working to conserve the productive farms, watersheds, woodlands, and beachfront of Long Island, the Trust is also protecting the unique rural heritage and natural resources of the region. For more information about the Peconic Land Trust, visit

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