The Manchester-Essex Conservation Trust is a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving ecologically important land and wildlife habitat in Manchester and Essex, Massachusetts, and promoting its use for quiet recreation, education and research.


2017 Photo Contest – And the winner is….

MECT’s photo contest is closed and judging is beginning! Stay tuned for the announcement. Judges will determine winners and honorable mentions in four different categories: The Four Seasons; Animal Kingdom; Plants and Fungi; and Landscape. Each category will have two winners and one honorable mention. All photos must be taken outdoors on conservation land in Manchester or Essex and must be unpublished. A special award will be given to the best photo taken in the Manchester-Essex Wilderness Conservation Area and prizes will be awarded in a Youth Division (Ages 5-17). One outstanding photo will win “Best in Show.”

All winning photographs will be on display at the Santander Bank in Manchester from November 1 to December 6. Join us for an artists’ reception on November 4 from 9:00 to 12:00 pm at the bank – 17 Union Street.  All winning photos  will be printed and matted by MECT; Best in Show will be framed.

Viewers are especially captivated by photos showing the beauty and diversity of local woodlands, open fields, streams, and wetlands. These locales support a diversity of interesting and photogenic animals, plants and fungi, and the seasonal changes of light and weather are tempting lures to get out your camera, explore, sharpen your awareness of nature, your artistic eye, hone your technical skills and join the fun.

Please see the Photo Contest page for complete contest rules and submission instructions, including technical specifications and new digital alteration requirements.

Questions? email us at:

We can’t wait to see what YOU have to show us!

Date posted: December 27, 2016


Essex River, Dinghy in the Mist Heidi Winslow

Essex River, Dinghy in the Mist – Heidi Winslow

Winners of MECT’s 2016 photo contest were honored at a November reception at the Santander Bank in Manchester where the photos were on exhibit during November.

Congratulations to Heidi Winslow – Best in Show and David Young – Runner-up,   Best in Show.

The winning photographers are from the following towns: Manchester: Heidi Winslow, David Young, Ken King, Kristine Sadler; also Zoe Brown, Dilyn Engelhart and Shay Engelhart (youth winners). Gloucester: Shams ali Hashmi. Beverly: D. Scott Hufford. Danvers: Stephen Pompeo Ciampi.

MECT thanks the two judges, Barby Almy of Manchester and Martin Ray of Rockport. Ms. Almy also printed the enlarged photos for exhibit. Thanks also to Chuck Hayback of Nor’East Frameworks for matting and framing the “Best in Show.”

The 2017 Photo Contest is now underway and will close next September 1, so you can start perfecting your late fall/winter photo technique. Rules and Regulations are on our “Events” page.

Date posted: November 23, 2016

Our 50th Anniversary Video

Produced by Jeffrey McDonagh at JM Video Productions, and MECT Trustees Mike McDonagh and Mike Dyer, our 50th Anniversary video captures the beauty of the Manchester-Essex Woods, includes interviews with two of the founders of the Manchester Conservation Trust, shows enthusiastic school children exploring nature, and highlights the two-town cooperation that continues to support protection of this special natural open space.

Date posted: November 12, 2013

Welcoming New Members

MECT Annual 2012 004

Photo by Alida Bryant

Clean drinking water or parking lot pollution?  Bright fall colors or unchanging development?  Children’s nature trips or classroom routine? Invest in MECT’s future and invest in your own.  We have much to do and you can help.

 Choose a Tree and become a member now!

Date posted: September 4, 2013