Talladega-Mountain Longleaf Pine Conservation Partnership Welcomes New Coordinator

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By Keith Tassin, The Nature Conservancy

The Talladega-Mountain Longleaf Pine Conservation Partnership has hired Alex Varner to guide our conservation efforts.  Alex is moving back to his home state of Alabama after stints with The Nature Conservancy in NW Florida and Montana and is excited to be back in the mountain longleaf pine range.  With the addition of a coordinator, the partnership can fully begin to refine our conservation strategies and start accomplishing conservation on the ground.  With the assistance of a NFWF LSF grant, the partnership will contribute to the restoration of over 600 acres of longleaf pine on the Coosa Wildlife Management Area and 60 acres on an in-holding in the Oakmulgee District of the Talladega National Forest this winter.  Progress has also been made on getting more ecologically important fire on the ground in the landscape; a recent agreement between The Nature Conservancy and the US Forest Service will fund additional fire crew resources to assist Alabama’s National Forests in implementing more prescribed fires and the NFWF grant will fund these same crews to assist with burns at the Cahaba River National Wildlife Refuge and on private lands in the partnership area.  The NFWF grant will also provide funds for The Longleaf Alliance to coordinate a Longleaf 101 Academy with the partnership and begin planning a Mountain Longleaf Pine Conference.

Image 1:  Prescribed burn at The Nature Conservancy’s Roberta Case Pine Hills Preserve.  Photo by Keith Tassin.

 

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