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Conservancy Across America

May 20, 2013
WVweb

OHIO

Late last year, the Ohio Chapter of The Nature Conservancy completed its largest purchase ever - 2,497 acres of forest in Washington Township, near Ironton.

The land had been owned by MeadWestvaco Corp. since 1996. In addition, the Conservancy has an agreement in principal to purchase an option for an additional 1,700 acres of adjoining land, also owned by MeadWestvaco.

The Conservancy made the purchase because it provides an unusual opportunity to protect a large, intact forest in Ohio's Appalachian region, a priority area for the Ohio Chapter. While the trees on this property are relatively young, this land is part of the Appalachian hardwood forest ecosystem - the oldest and most diverse forest system in America.

The combined purchase and option totals about 4,200 acres and will be the largest land acquisition project in the Ohio Chapter's history.

The land is nestled within the Ironton Ranger District of the Wayne National Forest, and the Conservancy hopes that one day this property will be transferred to the U.S. Forest Service to become part of Ohio's only national forest.

The property has been open to the public while it was owned by MeadWestvaco and the Conservancy is working to continue this public access for hunting, fishing, and hiking. This area of the state offers an unparalleled opportunity to hunt turkey, grouse, squirrel and deer, and the highest records of whitetail deer have been taken in the counties where the National Forest is located.

Throughout Ohio, The Nature Conservancy has protected more than 32,000 acres of natural lands. Ohio is home to 23 preserves. In Northwest Ohio, they are Kitty Todd containing a high concentration of rare species including black oaks and rare butterflies; East Sandusky Bay with 1,200 acres of Lake Erie wetlands, and Putnam Marsh with bald eagles and nine rare plant species.

Northeast Ohio preserves are Beck Fen, with many rare plant species growing in this area occupied by glaciers some 18,000 years ago; Crystal Lake, with high water quality and unique aquatic communities; the tamarack-ringed Flatiron Lake Bog; Herrick Fen Nature Preserve, featuring a recently-renovated boardwalk for better public access; and the 1,000 acres of intact wetland that make up White Pine Bog Forest. Also in Northeast Ohio is the Grand River Watershed with Morgan Swamp and Walden II Preserve.

Preserves in Central Ohio include the Darby Creek Watershed, which has been called one of the most biologically diverse aquatic systems in the Midwest; Bald Knob, which is home to three 'slump prairies;' Betsch Fen Preserve, home to the spotted turtle; Brown's Lake Bog, a 100-acre preserve with floating sphagnum moss; Huffman Prairie on the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base is one of the largest tallgrass prairies in Ohio; and Stillfork Swamp, an important nesting ground for rare marsh and water birds.

In Southern Ohio, the preserves are the Edge of Appalachia Preserve with 12,000 acres featuring such species at the timber rattlesnake and the green salamander; Baker Swamp Preserve, 100 acres of shallow open-water wetland and cattail marsh; Glade Wetland, which is the winter home to numerous raptors including the red-tailed hawk; Keystone Nature Preserve, featuring a mixed oak forest; Redbird Hollow, a forested ravine that provides habitat for migrating and nesting birds including the cardinal; Rothenbuhler Woods, dominated by more than 20 tree species; and Tefft Memorial Preserve with a hemlock gorge forest.

PENNSYLVANIA

The Pennsylvania chapter of The Nature Preserve completed a special report this spring that is expected to help create an aquatic fauna classification system throughout the state and eventually across the country.

The Pennsylvania Aquatic Community Classification Project of the Pennsylvania Natural Heritage Program completed a report documenting the results from a pilot study. The report, called 'The Pennsylvania Aquatic Community Classification Project Phase I Final Report,' is a major stepping stone toward creating a classification of aquatic fauna throughout Pennsylvania and toward creating a national aquatic classification system in coordination with NatureServe.

The report outlines the history of the project, the methodology created to develop the preliminary classification, lists of aquatic communities and the future directions of the project. The ACCP staff is seeking input from scientists, conservation agencies and organizations, Heritage programs, and others about the findings. The ACCP has been developed through partnerships with a long list of interested parties and will continue to work with partners as the project continues to grow.

By classifying Pennsylvania's natural resources, there will be more information available to conservation organizations and watershed groups that are doing the work on the ground. This classification will be a useful tool for the public to understand where their watershed looks good and where it needs improved.

An aquatic community classification for Pennsylvania can be used by managers to make sound management decisions, by planners to make sound development and planning decisions, by conservation groups to make sound conservation and restoration decisions, by agencies to help assess the health of Pennsylvania's aquatic communities, and by watershed groups to better understand their watershed and what they can do to conserve it.

Throughout the central, southeastern, northeastern, and western regions of the state, the Pennsylvania chapter of The Nature Conservancy protects 26 lands.

In Central Pennsylvania, the preserves are Fort Indiantown Gap, home to the rare regal fritillary butterfly; King's Gap Environmental Education Center, sitting atop South Mountain and containing 15 miles of hiking trails; Mount Holly Preserve, with marshes, swamps, and an upland forest environment; Mountain Run Ponds, a cluster of natural pools providing habitat for rare plants; West Branch Wilderness, a large wild forest on the edge of the Central Appalachian and High Allegheny Plateau ecoregions; and Westfall Ridge Prairie, a globally-rare rocky glade prairie community.

Southeastern Pennsylvania preserves include French Creek State Park, home to a designated Pennsylvania Scenic River, hardwood forests, and swamps; John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge at Tinicum, home to the state's largest freshwater tidal marsh; Chrome Barrens, where migrant birds and wildflowers can be seen in the spring and butterflies can be found in late fall; New Texas Serpentine Barrens, which has the highest quality of grasslands in the serpentine barrens; Nottingham Serpentine Barrens, which provide desert-like habitat for unusual plant species; Goat Hill Serpentine Barrens, the largest occurrence of serpentine barrens in the eastern U.S.; and Bristol Marsh, called the best remaining example of a Mid-Atlantic tidal marsh.

In Northeastern Pennsylvania, preserves are Cherry Valley, with a dozen rare plants, animals and natural communities; Florence Shelly Preserve, with a floating bog and glacial pond; Haystacks at Wyoming State Forest, home to weathered rock domes known as the haystacks; Long Pond, preserving more than 24,000 acres of the Pocono Plateau; Moosic Mountain Barrens, home to a rare moth species and other rare animals; Mount Bethel Fen Complex, featuring 21 rare plants including Carolina Grass-of-Parnassus; Seven Tubs Nature Area, featuring the unusual geological phenomenon in which 'tubs' were formed in gray sandstone about 10,000 years ago; Stuart M. Stein Preserve at Tannersville Cranberry Bog, hosting beautiful plants such as calla lilies and orchids; Thomas Darling Preserve at Two Mile Run, a 2,200-acre groundwater-fed wetland; and Woodbourne Forest, home to one of the few remaining tracts of old-growth forest in Eastern Pennsylvania.

The preserves in Western Pennsylvania are French Creek Watershed, providing habitat for many species of special concern including rare birds; Lake Pleasant, called one of the best examples of a pristine glacial lake in the state; and Ohio River Islands, protecting more than 3,000 acres of habitat.

NEW YORK

This spring, a New York chapter of The Nature Conservancy was busy taking steps to preserve part of the Boquet River shoreline.

Below the Willsboro Dam, the Boquet River flows through a wilderness setting of dense forests and lush wetlands before reaching Lake Champlain. The Adirondack Nature Conservancy recently purchased 110 acres from Willsboro Industries Inc., conserving more than a half-mile of river shoreline within this natural corridor.

The Boquet River flows from the high peaks and forests of the Adirondacks through the rich farmland of the Champlain Valley and empties into Lake Champlain in the town of Willsboro. Along its length, it provides habitat for a wide variety of plants and animals, including the superb jewelwing damselfly, spotted salamander, brook trout, belted kingfisher, and several species of horsetails. At its sandy delta is an intact floodplain forest with towering cottonwood and sycamore trees.

With five chapters and numerous programs in New York, the Nature Conservancy protects 431,370 acres. There are seven ecosystems in the state ' the Great Lakes, the Western Allegheny Plateau, the High Allegheny Plateau, the St. Lawrence/Champlain Valley, the North Atlantic Coast, Lower New England/Northern Piedmont, and Northern Appalachian/Boreal Forest.

In addition to New York City offices, the state is home to chapter offices for the Adirondacks, the Central and Western region, South Fork/Shelter Island, and Eastern New York.

There are more than 100 preserves throughout the state. Some of the key preserves and regions are:

Neversink River Preserve The Neversink Preserve, a 'Last Great Place,' is the centerpiece for the Neversink River Program, established to protect the Neversink River ecosystem. There is an extensive trail system.

Big Woods Big Woods is part of one of the most extensive salt marsh-tidal creek systems remaining in the Peconic Estuary. It is comprised of woodlands, wetlands, ponds, and beaches overlooking the Great Peconic Bay.

Lake Champlain New York's Champlain Valley features extensive forested mountains, fertile and scenic agricultural landscapes, a rocky coastline with sandy beaches, and historically rich cultural heritage.

Thousand Acre Swamp This swamp has extensive trails from which visitors can observe a unique variety of habitats, from moist lowlands to upland forests, right in Rochester's back yard.

Long Island Central Pine Barrens This region is a diverse mosaic of pitch pine woodlands, pitch pine-oak forests, coastal plain ponds, swamps, marshes, bogs and streams.

MINNESOTA

Together with its members and conservation partners, The Nature Conservancy has protected more than 400,000 acres of critical natural lands in Minnesota.

This year, one of the Minnesota Chapter's key projects has been protecting lands around Camp Ripley ' a state-owned military training site in Central Minnesota that serves as the primary field training facility for the Minnesota Army National Guard. Camp Ripley, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and The Nature Conservancy have formed a unique partnership to conserve some of Minnesota's critical natural resources while protecting lands bordering Camp Ripley in order to maintain the future viability of Camp Ripley's mission.

Last year, the Department of Defense received Congressional authority to approve partnerships with states and non-profit conservation organizations to preserve habitat and reduce encroachment on military operations. When surrounding areas are too intensively developed, the military often loses training flexibility and the ability to adapt to future mission needs. Lasting and comprehensive conservation management is essential if the armed forces are to continue to effectively train soldiers.

The Nature Conservancy and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources have been working with Camp Ripley on a variety of land management practices for several years. In fact, last year The Nature Conservancy and Camp Ripley cooperated on thousands of acres of prescribed fire to revitalize the natural landscape. Because Department of Defense lands tend to be large and not subject to the same kinds of development pressures and intense land uses as other properties, they tend to harbor a disproportionate amount of biological diversity.

At Camp Ripley, the Minnesota National Guard is proposing a compatible land use program know as the Army Compatible Use Buffer (ACUB) program. This program has identified priority areas within a land buffer adjacent to Camp Ripley. Landowners within the buffer can participate in a voluntary program to protect their lands from development, and thereby safeguard the public from noise, smoke, and dust.

Furthermore, the program will provide an important buffer that will ensure Camp Ripley's viability as a military training site into the future. Compatible land uses such as agriculture, forestry, and recreation will be encouraged in this voluntary program, which will also serve to protect the rural character of the area.

Four ecoregions in Minnesota are home to 29 preserves. The ecoregions are Northern Tallgrass Prairie along the eastern portion of the state, Prairie-Forest Border in the central and southeast portions of the state, Superior Mixed Forest in the north-central and northeast part of the state, and Lake Superior Highland in a small area bordering the lake in the northeast corner of Minnesota.

Some of the preserves are Seven Sisters Prairie, which offers visitors a panoramic view of the surrounding countryside and of Lake Christina; Susie Island, the largest of 13 small, rocky islands jutting out of Lake Superior amid the high cliffs and hills of the Pigeon River country; Paul Bunyan Savanna, home to the Blanding's turtle, a state threatened species, along with the eastern hognose snake, a species of special concern; Black Dog Scientific and Natural Area, one of very few examples in the state of a calcareous fen especially unusual because it lies within the greater Twin Cities metropolitan area; Ottawa Bluffs, which is home to an Indian burial mound; and Chippewa Prairie, which represents a small remnant of the once vast northern tallgrass prairie ecosystem

MICHIGAN

One of Michigan's most important watersheds will now be better protected, thanks to a 245-acre acquisition last month by The Nature Conservancy and the Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation Commission.

The parcel includes a mile of the River Raisin and its floodplain forest, which serves as a giant sponge, soaking up and filtering water as it drains into the river. Three communities Adrian, Blissfield and Deerfield draw their drinking water from the river, and local farmers depend on the river for irrigating their crops.

This is the third partnership project between the two organizations, which together have protected more than 1,500 acres, including six miles of the River Raisin. The county and the conservancy decided to partner again on this project after the former owner decided to sell it in only one parcel. The county will purchase the majority of the property, 205 acres, through its Natural Areas Preservation Program (NAPP). Funding for NAPP comes from a millage referendum passed in 2000.

Because the site includes several structures, The Nature Conservancy will buy the remaining 40 acres and will most likely sell its portion to a private owner after placing a conservation easement on the property to restrict any future development.

The Nature Conservancy protects about 82,000 acres in Michigan. There are 13 preserves in four regions.

The Eastern Upper Peninsula preserves are McMahon Lake Preserve, which is located in the Two-Hearted River watershed, immortalized by Ernest Hemingway's 'Big Two Hearted' story; Maxton Plains Preserve, which is called one of the world's finest examples of alvar grassland; Carl A. Gerstacker Nature Preserve at Dudley Bay, which includes miles of Lake Huron's northern shoreline and offers a rich tapestry of intertwined habitats; and Tip of the Keweenaw, which juts 60 miles into Lake Superior and is a product of volcanic activity, formed at least 1 billion years ago.

In the Western Upper Peninsula Region, preserves include the Mary Macdonald Preserve at Horseshoe Harbor, which is home to stunted shrubs and trees clinging to ancient bedrock in the face of Lake Superior's fierce winds and Laughing Whitefish Lake Preserve, where there are lots of natural wonders to see at different seasons including wildflowers, beautiful foliage and migratory birds.

Preserves in the Eastern Lower Peninsula are Grass Bay Preserve, which extends along two miles of stunning Lake Huron shoreline; Ives Road Fen Preserve, one of the largest and least disturbed fen wetlands in Michigan; Erie Marsh Preserve, which represents 11 percent of the remaining marshland in southeastern Michigan and is one of the largest marshes on Lake Erie; and Nan Weston Nature Preserve at Sharon Hollow, which features streams lined with silver maple, red ash and swamp white oak along with swampy areas filled with black ash, American elm and yellow birch.

In the Western Lower Peninsula, preserves are Zetterberg Preserve at Point Betsie, home to a dynamic mosaic of shifting sand dunes, interdunal wetlands, boreal forest and sandy Lake Michigan beaches; Ross Coastal Plain Marsh Preserve, which contains some of the best coastal plain marsh in Michigan; and Robinson Woods Preserve, a unique and fragile ecosystem of virgin forest and second-growth forest on former agricultural lands and floodplain forest.

KANSAS

The Nature Conservancy Kansas Chapter, along with key partners, has just taken a bold step forward in conserving a major example of the 'other' tallgrass prairie ' land with deeper and more fertile soil than that in the Flint Hills, the state's main prairie preserve.

A few miles south of the city of Garnett in Anderson County, the Conservancy has purchased 1,242 acres, including 1,000 acres of deeper-soil tallgrass prairie.

In 1996 and 1998, the Conservancy acquired a total of 128 acres in this area in order to protect the largest remaining populations of the delicate and extremely rare Mead's milkweed. Only recently, however, was the Conservancy able to up the ante in a big way, stretching the preserve boundary two miles to the southeast.

Key funding was provided from the estate of Lynn Berentz of Fredonia, a State Wildlife Grant from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service provided through the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks, and the support of multiple Conservancy donors. The prior owners of more than half of the new purchase were so approving of the Conservancy's future vision for this land that they offered to sell it for a bargain price of over $80,000 less than the appraised value.

While the 'other' tallgrass prairie may no longer exist at a scale necessary to support the wandering herds of bison and elk or the carnivores that shadowed them, it still provides the fabric that sustains innumerable elements of that ancient prairie fraternity. With the support of conservancy members and local landowners, the dainty Mead's milkweed hidden among the riotous wildflowers, the prairie mole cricket, the crawfish frog, the Henslow's sparrow, and that icon of pioneer times, the greater prairie-chicken, all can have a future at this newly established preserve.

Kansas is home to six major preserves protecting more than 43,725 acres.

Cheyenne Bottoms Preserve This is a complex of marshy basins in a 41,000-acre lowland area containing the largest system of wetlands in Kansas. These wetlands make Cheyenne Bottoms the top shorebird spring migration staging area in the contiguous United States.

Smoky Valley Ranch Located in western Kansas, this 16,800-acre ranch is predominately a shortgrass prairie characterized by large grassland areas, dramatic chalk bluffs and rocky ravines overlooking the Smoky Hill River.

Konza Prairie One of the finest examples of tallgrass prairie in the United States, Konza Prairie is a field research station for the Kansas State University Division of Biology. Scientists and students from around the world come here to study prairie environments and a gain a greater appreciation of the area's ecological resources.

Flint Hills Initiative As part of the Conservancy's ongoing efforts to preserve the Flint Hills landscape, the Kansas Chapter initiated a community-based conservation program ' the Flint Hills Initiative ' which involves multiple strategies to abate critical threats in the greater Flint Hills of Kansas and Oklahoma.

Flint Hills Tallgrass Prairie Preserve This 2,188-acre tallgrass preserve is home to several hundred plant species and numerous bird species, including the greater prairie chicken and Henslow's sparrow.

Anderson County Prairies Native tallgrass prairie on this preserve provides habitat for part of the world's largest known population of globally-threatened Mead's milkweed.

IOWA

The Nature Conservancy in Iowa has been busy protecting additional lands surrounding some of its key preserves.

In January the organization protected an additional 23 acres in the Loess Hills through a land purchase. This land tract is important because it represents one of the last remaining in-holdings within The Nature Conservancy's Broken Kettle Grasslands preserve.

The tract contains high quality native prairie and provides habitat for the prairie rattlesnake.

And just a month earlier, in December, The Nature Conservancy completed a transaction that protects an additional 205.5 acres in the Loess Hills. This was done through the purchase of a conservation easement. The conservation easement was purchased from Bill & Dotty Zales of Westfield, Iowa at a bargain price.

The Zales property contains significant remnant prairie and will serve as a buffer protecting sensitive areas of The Nature Conservancy's 3,000-acre Broken Kettle Grasslands Preserve.

Also in January, the organization protected 189 acres of Grand River Grasslands through a land purchase in Ringgold County.

This was The Nature Conservancy's first land purchase in the Iowa portion of the Grand River Grasslands. The Nature Conservancy in Missouri had already protected nearly 4,000 acres in the Missouri portion of the Grand River Grasslands.

The Iowa purchase is adjacent to a wildlife area owned by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. It contains high quality native tallgrass prairie and prairie species such as the regal fritillary.

More than 9,000 acres of critical natural lands are preserved in 33 locations throughout the state. Some of the preserves are:

Souix City Prairie This is a Conservancy-owned 157-acre tallgrass prairie preserve. The prairie and wooded valleys of this well-drained, high-relief landscape support a variety of plants and animals typically found further west in the Great Plains.

Broken Kettle Grasslands This preserve forms the core of the conservancy's protection efforts in the northern portion of the Loess Hills, and it is a stellar example of this rare and intriguing landform. 'Loess' consists of tiny windblown silt particles.

Five Ridge Prairie This area was named for its five major prairie ridges extending throughout the area, separated by deep wooded valleys. The bur oak woodlands and approximately 300 acres of prairie are home to about 300 plant species, 25 of which are eastern range extensions of typically more western Great Plains species.

In addition, the preserve is used by at least 89 species of birds, 20 mammals and 49 butterfly species including several rare prairie butterflies.

Red Cedar Woodland Part of a large island on the Cedar River, it features floodplain forest dominated by sycamore, river birch, and silver maple trees. It is also a good location to observe bald eagles.

Swamp White Oak Preserve At 372 acres in size, the Swamp White Oak Preserve's high water table and frequent flooding support one of the best known examples of the globally rare swamp white oak woodland community.

Bluebell Hollow Preserve This is part of a complex of more than 27 slopes containing perhaps the greatest assemblage of high-ranking rare species and communities in the Midwest. This preserve is not open to the public.

FLORIDA

At The Nature Conservancy's Florida chapter, the most recent project is the Northwest Florida Greenway ' an unprecedented partnership of military, government and nonprofit organizations.

The greenway conserves critical ecosystems in one of the most biologically diverse regions in the United States, enhances the panhandle's economy and helps protect the military mission in northwest Florida.

In November of last year, the state of Florida, the U.S. Department of Defense and The Nature Conservancy signed a groundbreaking Memorandum of Partnership to establish a 100-mile protected corridor that connects Eglin Air Force Base and the Apalachicola National Forest.

Florida's panhandle is one of the United States' top six most biologically diverse regions. It harbors 75 percent of the state's plant species, 23 federally endangered species, 13 federally threatened species, old growth longleaf pine forests and healthy rivers, bays and estuaries.

Eglin and Tyndall Air Force bases, Whiting Field, Pensacola Naval Air Station and the Naval Surface Warfare Center collectively represent one of the nation's largest open air military testing and training areas.

In 2002, these northwest Florida military installations contributed $5.9 billion to Florida's economy. The Northwest Florida Greenway will create a buffer zone between nearby communities and critical flight paths needed for military personnel training and defense development.

In Florida The Nature Conservancy has helped protect more than 1 million acres. Five key preserves are open to the public:

Tiger Creek Preserve Located on the edge of Florida's oldest and highest landmass, the Lake Wales Ridge, Tiger Creek Preserve is named after the pristine blackwater stream that forms the spine of this sanctuary.

Apalachicola Bluffs and Ravines Preserve Located in the Apalachicola ravines region of Florida, the Apalachicola Bluffs and Ravines Preserve protects one of the few areas where steephead ravines exist. The region is biologically unique to Florida and is home to many species more commonly found in the Appalachian Mountains.

The Disney Wilderness Preserve The Nature Conservancy's Disney Wilderness Preserve is a remarkable place for hikers of all ages and interests. The preserve is home to hundreds of wildlife species and is bordered by one of the last remaining undeveloped lakes in central Florida.

Blowing Rocks Preserve Blowing Rocks Preserve is a magnificent barrier island sanctuary located on Jupiter Island, between the Atlantic Ocean and the Indian River Lagoon.

Islands Initiative Preserve The tidal saltmarsh and islands that make up the Conservancy's Islands Initiative Preserve look much the same today as they did more than 400 years ago. Lying within a vast estuary, the preserve provides a haven for a variety of wildlife species.

HAWAII

The Nature Conservancy's efforts in Hawaii include the recent expansion of the Kona Hema Preserve by 2,240 acres.

The Nature Conservancy has purchased 2,240 acres of native forestlands at Papa in South Kona on the island of Hawaii. The land, which will become part of the Conservancy's Kona Hema Preserve, was bought from businessman Kent Untermann for $1.7 million.

For the Conservancy, the sale marks the third acquisition of neighboring forestlands in South Kona in the past five years. In 1999, the Conservancy purchased 4,021 acres at Honomalino. Two years later the organization acquired another 1,800 acres at Kapua, which lies adjacent to the south of Honomalino.

The Honomalino and Kapua properties were purchased for $1 million each after significant donations by the respective landowners, First Hawaiian Bank and Leighton Mau.

The Papa parcel lies at an elevation of 3,200 to 5,600 feet and contains diverse koa, tree fern, and 'ohi'a forest stands on lava flows of different ages. It provides habitat for the endangered Hawaiian hawk and the endangered Hawaiian hoary bat.

It also provides habitat for four different native forest birds as well as potential habitat for the restoration of other endangered birds that occupied the area until the 1970s, including the 'alala, or Hawaiian crow, and the Hawaii creeper.

The Hawaii Chapter of The Nature Conservancy has directly helped protect more than 200,000 acres on six islands and has established a statewide system of 11 preserves totaling almost 32,000 acres. The Conservancy has also been a pioneer in large-scale forest protection efforts in Hawaii and is working with local communities and more than 50 public and private landowners to protect almost a 1 million acres of critical forest and conservation lands across the state.

On the Island of Hawaii, the preserves are the Kona Hema Preserve, protecting part of an ancient forest that spans more than 100,000 acres; the Kau Preserve, which is part of the largest and most intact expanse of native forest in the state; and the Kamehame Beach Preserve, which protects a critical nesting site for the endangered Hawksbill turtle.

On Maui, the preserves are the Waikomoi Preserve, which takes its name from a stream that runs through this sanctuary for hundreds of native Hawaiian species , and Kapunakea Preserve, home to 11 different native natural communities. The Conservancy is also a member of two conservation partnerships: the East Maui Watershed Partnership, which protects a 100,000-acre native forest that is home to at least 6 6 rare plant species and a greater concentration of rare and endangered birds than any other place in the U.S.; and the 50,000-acre West Maui Mountains Watershed Partnership, which protects a primary source of water for west Maui.

On Lanai, the Conservancy manages the Kanepuu Preserve, where several patches of an old, extremely rare Hawaiian dryland forest still remain, and is a member of the Lanai Forest and Watershed Partnership, which ensures the future supply of water for the island of Lanai.

Molokai preserves include Pelekunu Preserve, which feaures some of the tallest sea cliffs in the world; Kamakou Preserve, containing at least 250 species of Hawaiian plants; and Moomomi Preserve, which is called a last stronghold of a major Hawaiian coastal ecosystem. The Conservancy is also a member of the East Molokai Watershed Partnership, which is working to protect the native rain forests of the larger East Molokai watershed, the island's primary source of water.

On the Island of Oahu, the Conservancy manages Honouliuli Preserve, located in the Waianae Mountains and home to nearly 9 0 rare and endangered plant and animal species. The Conservancy is also a member of the Koolau Watershed Partnership, which protects a 100,00-acre watershed that is the island's primary source of water.

The single preserve on the Island of Kauai is the 80-acre Kanaele Bog, the only remaining low-elevation bog in the Hawaiian Islands.

NORTH DAKOTA

North Dakota is home to five major preserves:

Brown Ranch The Sheyenne Delta, which encompasses Brown Ranch, was a river delta formed at the place where the Sheyenne River flowed into Glacial Lake Agassiz. This lake covered the Red River Valley some 15,000 years ago.

Cross Ranch Preserve Cross Ranch, 30 miles north of Mandan, is located along the only free-flowing section of the Missouri River in North Dakota.

Davis Ranch Davis Ranch is one of the largest prairie landscapes in the Missouri Coteau. It is a mosaic of high quality northern mixed-grass prairie studded with fresh, alkaline, ephemeral and permanent wetlands.

John E. Williams Preserve John E. Williams Preserve, central North Dakota, near Turtle Lake, has gently rolling grasslands with numerous wetlands and large alkali lakes.

Pigeon Point Preserve Davis Ranch is one of the largest prairie landscapes in the Missouri Coteau. It is a mosaic of high quality northern mixed-grass prairie studded with fresh, alkaline, ephemeral and permanent wetlands.

 
 
 

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