Photo by Curtis Rindlaub


Photo © Curtis Rindlaub

Peaks Island Land Preserve


Peaks Island is small:  720 acres, barely a square mile.  A visitor in 1975 could have walked a mile along the back shore or through the woods without seeing any houses.  In recent years, our population has significantly increased and real estate development has dramatically changed the character of the island. Peaks Island Land Preserve protects the island’s natural areas and special places for the enjoyment of present and future generations.


We invite you to browse through our site to learn about PILP and what we do. Following are news, events, and opinions of interest to our island community.


Hundred Acre Wood photo © Marty Braun

An exciting announcement from PILP!

To the Peaks Island Community,

Members of the board of the Peaks Island Land Preserve are overjoyed to announce to the island community that we will be undertaking a thorough environmental study of the parcels of land that are either owned by PILP or under its protection. The study will generate a sensitive, science-based management plan for each property over the coming decade based on elements like wildlife and bird habitat, the balance of native and non-native vegetation, the protection of water resources, areas likely to be impacted by climate change or degraded from overuse or erosion. Thanks to the generosity of two island donors, research will be conducted and recommendations generated by Forrest Bell and his associates at FB Environmental (Portland) and Mohr & Seredin Landscape Architects (Peaks Island). We expect that the study will begin over the next couple of months and continue for approximately 12 to 18 months.
If you are interested in where the PILP parcels are on the island, please consult the map at the PILP website at https://www.peaksislandlandpreserve.org/  (You can find it under “places we protect”.)

John Whitman

January 22, 2022

Our Wild Places


Laura Glendening, Board member


Many of us on this Island have a place that is home but not our sheltering house. (Maybe we
have several.) A place like Wendell Berry writes about in his poem, The Peace of Wild Things:

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

A place I go is where my children played, damming and diverting tiny freshwater streams,
making villages and bridges for water to meander by on its way to the ocean, while I read to
them the story of The Hobbit.

Here is a beach in a snug corner protected from the prevailing winds. It often has a nicely dense
buffer of vegetation, a natural curtain, between the beach and roadway giving this place a
peacefulness and pleasant disconnection from all the human stuff that “developed” land holds.
In the spring the rascally catbird flies within and emerges from the vegetation on the cliffside to
say hello -- and often has a lot more to say, giving us their whole repertoire of sometimes very
silly calls. Chickadees visit too, blue jays, cardinals, and warblers. And crows watching over

The nearby well loved oak limb hangs on. Many remember when it was a tree offering shade.
Now with its roots just barely grasping the cliffside, and two baby oaks growing by its massive
and elaborate root structure, I wonder how the passage of time will play out here, and what
presently their quiet conversation is.

The rocks soak up the warmth of the sun, giving an old soul, like a tired tree or human, heated
benches for an afternoon rest. Or a seat to watch the great blue heron, cormorants, loons,
eagles, osprey, terns, turkey vultures, seals, sky, and water.

I imagine this place and humans have been friends always. Here is a welcoming old friend that
is there through calms and storms, sharing stories and understandings, and offering a place to
feel the “day blind stars waiting with their light”.

November 16, 2021

Celebrating our 25th anniversary has been something of a dud in this unusual year of 2020. At the changing of the year it's usual to take a look back, as well as forward, and so we're looking back 15 years, to 2005. That year, then President Brenda Buchanan wrote an article for The Island Times looking back from there at the Peaks Island Land Preserve's first 10 years. It's interesting to revisit the beginnings of our organization, and take a look at how things have changed, or not, as time has passed. This PILP at 10 link will take you to the story on our website.

Memorial Gifts
2021, 2020

In Memory of Frank Butler
Ben Marsden

Russell and Marion Bowden
Laurie and William Fitts
Caleb and Bronwyn Loring
Joan Lunn

In Honor of Bill Oliver
Susan Webster and Roger Dutton

In Memory of Miles Gibson and Sally Cowen
LaRue and Robert Forwood

In Memory of Ellen Hone Flessner
Gail Kamm

In Memory of Miles Gibson
Kathleen and Steven Miller
Martha Morris-Gibson
Jack and Chris Shevlin
Susan Webster and Roger Dutton  

Remembering a special person with a gift to the Peaks Island Land Preserve helps us in our work to conserve the wild spaces of this unique island for everyone, forever. We thank you for your support.

Rosa Marie Iovino, who passed away on August 13, 2020, has left her estate to the Peaks Island Land Preserve. We at PILP are surprised and humbled by such a generous gift from a woman who obviously loved her home and the island.
At the discretion of the executor, Maria's home will be rented through the winter, until the estate proceeds through probate and passes to the Land Preserve. We will be considering the paths we might take that would honor Maria’s wishes for the property and that would benefit the island community.

If you like birds be sure to visit our Back Shore Bird Blog

Forever Wild...