Founded in 1985, the Dutchess Land Conservancy is among the most prominent and active land conservation organizations in the country. Our small and dedicated team works tirelessly in pursuit of our mission and takes pride in developing positive and active relationships with our landowners and creating lasting and meaningful land stewardship throughout Dutchess County.

Our Mission

The Dutchess Land Conservancy (DLC) is dedicated to preserving the scenic, agricultural, and environmental resources of Dutchess County, New York, and the surrounding areas.

Our Vision

As the DLC accomplishes its mission, the result of our work will help ensure:
  • Traditional small villages and hamlets surrounded by large expanses of protected farm and forest land, with scenic views that inspire what people love most about this area.
  • Sustainable working farms, supported by the community, that include the production of local, healthy foods, healthy forests and timber supplies, as a part of everyday life.
  • Connected corridors that ensure diverse and well-functioning ecosystems that provide numerous benefits for human and habitat health and wellbeing including clean drinking water.
  • The opportunity for people to enjoy the outdoors and appreciate important natural areas and open spaces which inspires their love of and connection to nature and reinforces their sense of home.

Where we work

Dutchess County was established in 1693 as one of New York State’s first twelve counties with Poughkeepsie serving as the county seat. The county is 825 square miles and consists of twenty towns, two cities, and nine villages with a population of 295,911 people according to the 2020 census. Located mid-way between New York City and the state capitol of Albany, and bordered by the Hudson River to the west and Connecticut to the east, Dutchess County retains a rural character that draws residents and visitors alike to its scenic landscapes, outdoor recreational opportunities, and historic landmarks.

map nymap county

Did You Know?

  • Dutchess County Agriculture comprises over 170,000 acres and produces $44.8 million in market value products
  • We’re one of the top ten apple-producing counties in New York, coming in at #8
  • More horses and goats reside in Dutchess County than any other county in New York
  • The Dutchess County Fair is the second most popular county fair in New York State
  • The highest elevation in the county is Brace Mountain in the Taconic range at 2,311 feet
  • The lowest elevation is sea level, along the Hudson River
  • The Hudson River is an estuary. During flood (rising) tides the river flows north, and during ebb (falling) tides the river flows south toward the ocean
  • The county boasts 2,970 miles of streams
  • 38 of 40 of the county’s lakes and ponds are larger than 25 acres in size
  • Dutchess County has more than 76 trail systems for hiking, walking and biking, totaling 350 miles and 38 miles of former railroad lines have been converted to rail trails