November 02, 2015
For more information
Carrie Kasnicka, (630) 567-1717,
Grant to GBR Trust Helps To Secure Habitat for Whoopers
CALHOUN COUNTY, Texas — A partnership that involves the Guadalupe Blanco River Trust (GBR Trust), the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and local land owners has formed the basis of conservation planning and acquisition of vital habitats for threatened and endangered species in Texas is being supported with a recently received $316,800 Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund (CESCF) grant.
GBR Trust Executive Director Todd Votteler, Ph.D., explained, “Prime Prairie and Wetland Habitat for Whooping Cranes Wintering in Texas was the objective submitted to the USFWS in our application to secure funding that would help us acquire, by conservation easement, about 218 acres of habitat for whooping cranes within the Lower Guadalupe Basin and San Antonio Bay region along the Texas coast.” The properties are located in Calhoun and Refugio counties and primarily will benefit the whooping crane, Atwater’s prairie chicken and northern aplomado falcon.
“Private landowners and natural resource managers play a vital role in conserving our nation’s most imperiled wildlife,” Dan Ashe, service director, said. “By cultivating partnerships between federal and local governments, private organizations and individuals, we can establish creative and effective solutions to some of the greatest conservation challenges of our time. These grants are one of many tools available under the Endangered Species Act, and we look forward to continued guidance and support for these programs.”
The conservation easements in Calhoun and Refugio counties will be held by the Guadalupe Blanco River Trust. “The GBR Trust has been working to preserve habitats for endangered species since 2001,” Votteler said, adding, “By working with USFWS and our landowner partners, we hope to preserve some of the final parcels in the upper portion of Guadalupe River Delta.” The GBR Trust already holds conservation easements in the Guadalupe River Delta and owns the 816-acre Hog and Schwing’s Bayou Preserve nearby that protects 4.35 miles of riparian habitat.
The GBR Trust is a charitable, non-profit 501(c)(3) organization that was established to conserve the land and water of the Guadalupe River watershed for its natural, recreational, scenic, historic, and productive value. Its mission is to promote and encourage the conservation, stewardship and enjoyment of the land and water resources of the Guadalupe River watershed, while maintaining its unique and irreplaceable natural heritage. To date, more than 10,000 acres are preserved in perpetuity, spanning 10 counties. Additional information about the Trust is available at www.gbrtrust.org.