Nearly 5,000 acres of forestland in Longleaf Ridge are protected by conservation easement
August 4, 2014– COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The Nature Conservancy, Texas A&M Forest
Service, and the U.S. Forest Service have collaborated to purchase a
conservation easement on 4,785 acres of forestland in the Longleaf Ridge
area of East Texas, permanently protecting some of the best longleaf
pine habitat in the state.
The groups purchased the easement for $2,277,000 from Crown Pine
Timber LP, a limited partnership managed by Campbell Global, a timber
investment and management firm based in Portland, Oregon. Campbell
Global manages over 1 million acres of timberlands in East Texas on
behalf of Crown Pine Timber.
The easement was funded through the Forest Legacy Program, a federal
program managed by the USDA Forest Service. The Nature Conservancy
provided $569,250 in matching funds.
This type of conservation – often called a “working forest”
conservation easement – keeps forestlands in private ownership while
conserving the land for future generations. Landowners and local
communities continue to realize economic gain from timber management
while the forest provides other benefits such as watershed protection,
wildlife habitat, recreation and scenic values.
Crown Pine Timber will continue to harvest timber on the property
according to a forest stewardship plan; however, the easement prohibits
subdivision and development of the land by any current or future owner.
“We appreciate our partners for their commitment to maintaining
working forests in this critical conservation area. Campbell Global has
a rich history of environmental stewardship and sustainable forest
management. We are pleased to have the opportunity to work with our
partners to protect this land from development and for future
generations,” said John Gilleland, CEO of Campbell Global.
Texas A&M Forest Service, a Member of the Texas A&M
University System, will monitor and enforce the conditions of the
“This conservation easement is good for Texas. It allows us to
protect some of our working forests and the values and services they
provide in perpetuity, while keeping the land in private ownership,”
said Brad Barber, who coordinates the Forest Legacy Program within the
Texas A&M Forest Service.
Longleaf Ridge, where the easement is located, is a large block of
undeveloped forestland located north of Jasper, Texas, connecting the
Angelina and Sabine National Forests. The easement protects examples of
the area’s unique features, including spring-fed creeks, Catahoula rock
outcrops, longleaf pine forests, and bogs which are home to wild orchids
and insect-eating pitcher plants.
“The United States has lost 95 percent of its longleaf pine forests,
which are now among the rarest and most threatened ecosystems in the
country,” said Wendy Ledbetter, director of The Nature Conservancy’s
forest program in Texas. “With our state’s rapidly increasing
population, we must work with private landowners, the timber industry
and state and federal partners to restore these vital forests in Texas.”
Longleaf pine forests once stretched from Texas to Virginia, covering
some 90 million acres. These forests are among the most biologically
diverse ecosystems in the United States, providing habitat for
high-priority species such as red-cockaded woodpecker, Louisiana pine
snake, Bachman’s sparrow, bobwhite quail, eastern wild turkey, and
Louisiana black bears. Today, according to USDA Forest Service, less
than three percent is left of the original longleaf forest.
Over the last decade, increased awareness and restoration efforts
have begun to reverse the century-long decline of longleaf pine forests,
including the recent organization of the America’s Longleaf
Restoration Initiative, a national effort to focus public and private
funding on maintaining, improving, and restoring longleaf pine forests
throughout its historic range.
According to Brian Gowin, Conservation and SFI Manager for Campbell
Global’s Southwest Region, “Campbell Global has taken a proactive
approach to protect and conserve longleaf pine ecosystems, working in
partnership with non-profits and government agencies." In addition to
this easement, Gowin credits the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Texas
Parks and Wildlife Department, and National Wild Turkey Federation for
partnering with Campbell Global to restore or enhance over 7,000 acres
of longleaf pine forests and associated riparian habitat in Longleaf
Ridge since 2008.
“At the moment, opportunities to conserve more forestland are limited
only by the availability of funding,” said David Bezanson, the Nature
Conservancy’s protection and easement manager. “Forest Legacy Program
funding has been shrinking in recent years along with other federal
conservation programs. More public and private investment is needed to
keep forestlands intact to benefit the economy and wildlife of East
David Bezanson, The Nature Conservancy, dbezanson@TNC.ORG (512) 217-0025
Brad Barber, Texas A&M Forest Service, firstname.lastname@example.org (979) 218-3044
Photos are available at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/texasforestservice/sets/72157645765611320/
LLR - Hilltop view through a Loblolly Pine Plantation: Loblolly pine
plantation south of pipeline ROW deed on Longleaf Ridge Conservation
LLR - Longleaf Pine Cone: Longleaf pine cone against longleaf pine truck backdrop on Longleaf Ridge Conservation Easement.
LLR - Longleaf Pine Regeneration with Mature Longleaf Pine
2:Longleaf pine regeneration area with mature pines on Longleaf Ridge
LLR - Looking Up Through Longleaf Pine Saplings: Looking up through
longleaf pine saplings on Longleaf Ridge Conservation Easement.
LLR - Mature Longleaf Pine on Longleaf Ridge Conservation Easement:
Looking up trunk of mature longleaf pine on Longleaf Ridge Conservation
LLR – Money Hole 1:Waterfall at Money Hole near headwaters of Rock Creek on Longleaf Ridge Conservation Easement (horizontal).
LLR - Longleaf Pine Plantation on Longleaf Ridge Conservation
Easement 1: Longleaf pine regeneration on Longleaf Ridge Conservation
About Campbell Global, LLC
Campbell Global, LLC is a leader in sustainable timberland and
natural resource investment management, built on a foundation of quality
service, unmatched expertise, and integrity. The firm currently manages
more than 3.1 million acres (1.3 million hectares) worldwide,
representing approximately $6.3 billion in assets. As a full-service
firm with a global focus, we provide clients with unparalleled expertise
and transparency through all stages of the investment life cycle.
Campbell Global is one of the only timberland investment organizations
that manage for conservation purposes on behalf of a non-profit
organization. Based in Portland, Oregon, the firm was founded in 1981 as
The Campbell Group and brings more than three decades of experience and
industry knowledge to timberland investment management and value
creation. For more information visit www.campbellglobal.com.
About The Nature Conservancy
The mission of The Nature Conservancy is to conserve the lands and
waters on which all life depends. To date, the Conservancy and its more
than 1 million members have been responsible for the protection of more
than 119 million acres of land and 5,000 miles of rivers worldwide and
the operation of more than 100 marine projects globally. In the Lone
Star State, The Nature Conservancy owns more than 30 nature preserves
and conservation properties and assists private landowners to conserve
their land through more than 100 voluntary land-preservation agreements.
With public and private partners, we have permanently conserved nearly
one million acres across Texas. Visit The Nature Conservancy in Texas
on the Web at www.nature.org/texas.
About Texas A&M Forest Service
Texas A&M Forest Service, a proud member of The Texas A&M
University System, focuses on conserving and protecting the state’s
trees, forests and related natural resources. Learn more at http://texasforestservice.tamu.edu.