News

 

Three Rivers Land Trust permanently conserves 27 acres in Montgomery County

Three Rivers Land Trust (TRLT) is excited to announce the conservation of a 27-acre property located in Montgomery County. The landowners, Dennis and Marcia Shaw, placed a permanent conservation easement on their property in December of 2020. This working-lands conservation easement allows for continued agricultural and forestry practices, while restricting the future development and subdivision of this important parcel.

This unique property is located between two large tracts owned by the United States Forest Service (USFS). The conservation of this tract builds off a base of these adjacent conserved lands, providing connectivity for wildlife. Protecting tracts like this one from development increases the ability of the USFS to manage their existing lands, including the use of land management tools like prescribed fire.

“Three Rivers Land Trust are happy to help the Shaw’s meet their conservation goals for this property and to conserve this important wildlife corridor ,” states Executive Director Travis Morehead. “Protecting land in and around the small and fragmented Uwharrie National Forest has been a focus of the Land Trust for more than two decades.” In addition to the Shaw Land, Three Rivers Land Trust protected two other Montgomery County tracts this year as well totaling over 200 acres.

To learn more about how to protect your own property contact Crystal Cockman, Director of Conservation, at 704-647-0302 or crystal@threeriverslandtrust.org

For more information on becoming a member and supporting Three Rivers Land Trust in their mission, please contact Michael Fulk, Associate Director, at 704-647-0302 or michael@threeriverslandtrust.org, You can also visit their website at www.threeriverslandtrust.org

Three Rivers Land Trust permanently conserves 147 acres in Davie County

Three Rivers Land Trust (TRLT) is excited to announce the conservation of a 147-acre property located in Davie County. The landowner, Grover McNair, placed a permanent conservation easement on his family farm on December 29th, 2020. This conservation easement will restrict future development and subdivision of this important parcel.

“The conservation of important natural areas and family farms are a focus of Three Rivers Land Trust and we are thankful to have helped Mr. McNair protect his property in perpetuity” states Executive Director Travis Morehead.

“This newly protected property in Davie County is comprised of mature hardwoods, pine stands, and is bisected by a beautiful unnamed creek that is a tributary of Dutchman’s Creek,” states Sam Parrott, Associate Director of Conservation. “By conserving this property, we are not only protecting the extensive mixed hardwoods and wildlife habitat, but are also protecting water quality in Dutchman’s Creek and ultimately the Yadkin River”. Three Rivers Land Trust is committed to working with property owners like Mr. McNair to conserve tracts like these, while they remain undeveloped.

“I consider myself very fortunate to be able to protect this beautiful tract of land”, states Mr. McNair. “Many thanks to Three Rivers Land Trust for helping me realize my father’s dream. I know his spirit is smiling. My wish is that future generations will enjoy and appreciate the peace and tranquility this land affords.”

To learn more about how to protect your own property, contact Crystal Cockman at 704-647-0302 or crystal@threeriverslandtrust.org.

For more information about supporting Three Rivers Land Trust by becoming a member, please contact Michael Fulk, michael@threeriverslandtrust.org or visit their website at www.threeriverslandtrust.org/donate.

Three Rivers Land Trust permanently conserves 115 acres on the Rocky River

Three Rivers Land Trust (TRLT) is excited to announce the conservation of a 115-acre property located in Stanly County. The landowners, Leon and Donna Huneycutt, placed a permanent conservation easement on their property in December of 2020. This working-lands conservation easement allows for continued agricultural and forestry practices, while restricting the future development and subdivision of this important parcel.

The Huneycutts previously worked with TRLT in 2002 to protect an adjacent 136-acre property. Both properties possess significant river frontage on the Rocky River, one of the longest undammed rivers in the Piedmont. Bald eagles, river otters, softshell turtles and many other important wildlife species call this river home.

“Three Rivers Land Trust is proud to have worked with the Huneycutts to permanently conserve their property and help them meet their conservation goals,” states Executive Director Travis Morehead. “Protecting working farms and forests has been a focus of TRLT since our inception, having protected more than 15,000 acres of farmland since 1995.”

Leon is truly leading by example, not only are he and his wife conservation land owners, Leon also serves on the TRLT Board of Directors.

To learn more about how to protect your own property, contact Crystal Cockman at 704-647-0302 or crystal@threeriverslandtrust.org.

For more information about supporting Three Rivers Land Trust by becoming a member, please contact michael@threeriverslandtrust.org or visit their website at www.threeriverslandtrust.org/donate.

Duke Energy Foundation Awards $10,000 to Three Rivers Land Trust for Expansion of Fred and Alice Stanback Educational Forest

Three Rivers Land Trust (TRLT) is excited to announce recent funding in the amount of $10,000 has been awarded to assist in the acquisition and transfer of approximately 50 acres to the Town of Spencer. This land will expand the existing Fred and Alice Stanback Educational Forest and Nature Preserve, and connects the existing preserve to Grants Creek. There is potential to develop additional trails and a canoe/kayak access on Grants Creek at this location.

“Three Rivers Land Trust is thrilled to have been awarded these funds from the Duke Energy Foundation for this incredible conservation project in Rowan County,” states Executive Director Travis Morehead. “This is a much-loved recreation site in Rowan County, used by the residents of Salisbury and Spencer and visitors to the area, as well. Public access has been a focus of our organization since its inception, having transferred over 5,700 acres of land to the public trust.”

The private landowner who owns this property is providing the land at a bargain sale, and another private donation in the amount of $10,000 has been received as well. In addition, TRLT was provisionally awarded the remainder of the funding needed to purchase these lands from the NC Land and Water Fund and expects those funds to be available early next year.

The Duke Energy Foundation is committed to investing resources and working alongside community partners to ensure future generations enjoy the immeasurable benefits of the nature around us. Duke Energy’s Nature Grants support water quality, quantity, conservation and access, habitat and forest restoration and conservation, and species conservation.

The community will be positively impacted by this acquisition by the Town of Spencer of 50 acres to the Fred and Alice Stanback Preserve. Local residents and tourists alike will have access to new hiking trails and possibly a canoe launch in the future. In addition, water quality will be maintained and improved on an existing 303d listed stream, as over a mile of frontage on Grants Creek and two tributaries will be protected.

Rare species and natural communities are also protected on this site. The project will provide protection to a portion of an alluvial forest, as well as a rare plant, Cardamine dissecta (fork-leaved toothwort), discovered on the land by a natural heritage biologist and a land trust staff member this Spring. This is the only documented occurrence of this rare plant in Rowan County.

To learn more about this project or how you can support Three Rivers Land Trust in our conservation mission, please contact Crystal Cockman, Director of Conservation of the Land Trust at 704-647-0302 or crystal@threeriverslandtrust.org.

Three Rivers Land Trust permanently conserves 130 acres in Randolph County on the Uwharrie River

Three Rivers Land Trust is excited to announce the conservation of a 130-acre property located in Randolph County. The landowners, Mark and Jessica Wilburn, placed a permanent conservation easement on their family farm, known as Uwharrie Ridge Farm, on September 25, 2020. This working lands conservation easement allows continued agricultural and forestry practices, while restricting future development and subdivision of this important parcel.

“Our staff is grateful to have worked with the Wilburns to conserve their beautiful farm,” states Executive Director Travis Morehead. “Farmland conservation has always been a focus of Three Rivers Land Trust, and we are proud to say that we have protected over 15,000 acres of farmland in the past 25 years.” This conservation easement was made possible by the North Carolina Agricultural Development and Farmland Preservation (ADFP) Trust Fund and the USDA Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP), who provided partial funding for the conservation easements on the Wilburn property.

“This newly protected property adjoins the Uwharrie River in Randolph County, and the scenic Uwharrie peak known as Black Mountain can be seen in the distance from the property,” states Crystal Cockman, Director of Conservation. “By conserving this property, we are not only protecting the agricultural land and wildlife habitat, but are also protecting water quality along the Uwharrie River and the tributaries that flow through this property. We are committed to working with property owners to conserve tracts like these, while they are still available.” This particular section of the Uwharrie River is popular with paddlers in the region, and it also features rare aquatic species, which makes the tract important to biodiversity conservation in addition to the farmland preserved.

It was important to this landowner that the legacy of agriculture continue on this farm in perpetuity. Currently, this parcel is cropland, but the owners have expressed intention to convert it to pastureland, which already comprises much of the Wilburns’ farm. Mark and Jessica worked with Three Rivers Land Trust in 2018 to protect another portion of their farm that is in pastureland, by placing 72 acres under conservation easement.

Three Rivers Land Trust expanded our conservation footprint to include five additional counties in the Sandhills and Coastal Plain. To learn more about how to support our conservation work or to protect your own property, contact Crystal Cockman at 704-647-0302 or crystal@threeriverslandtrust.org.

 About Three Rivers Land Trust 

Three Rivers Land Trust works with private landowners and public agencies to conserve the most important natural, scenic, agricultural, and historic places in a 15-county region of the Piedmont and Coastal Plain of North Carolina. Since 1995, the Land Trust has worked to offer reasonable and attractive options to landowners who want to conserve their lands for future generations to enjoy. Our mission is to work thoughtfully and selectively with property owners to conserve our lands, vistas, and the essential nature of our region. For more information about how you can become a supporting member of Three Rivers Land Trust, please contact the Land Trust at 704-647-0302 or michael@threeriverslandtrust.org or visit their website at www.threeriverslandtrust.org/donate

Three Rivers Land Trust hosted 4th Annual Conservation Classic Event

On October 2nd, Three Rivers Land Trust hosted their fourth annual Conservation Classic Sporting Clays Tournament at Hyatt Farms Sporting Clays near Polkton, NC to support local conservation.

Teams of four shot a round of 50 clays on a challenging 14-station sporting clay course. Team registration included ammunition, raffles, and prizes for the top scoring teams. Attendees also enjoyed a delicious lunch catered by Jordan’s Catering of West End, NC.

L-R Evan Spears, Tyler Brown, Jordan Tucker, Curt Kindley

The team that took home the top prize was Southern Builders. Team members include Tyler Brown, Curt Kindley, Jordan Tucker, and Evan Spears. Second place went to Culp Lumber. Overall individual winner also went to Curt Kindley with 48 out of 50 clays broken. Our Hometown Hero Team this year was Montgomery County Rescue.

“We’d like to thank Three Rivers Land Trust. As avid outdoorsmen we support and appreciate what they are doing to conserve and protect land here in our home state. We would also like to thank Hyatt’s for putting on an awesome shoot. Last but not least, we would like to thank our sponsor, Southern Builders for hosting our team,” states Evan Spears. “We look forward to seeing everyone at the 5th annual Conservation Classic!”

“Thanks to everyone who came out to our fourth annual Conservation Classic event,” states Executive Director Travis Morehead. “We had a great day at a beautiful venue and appreciate the support of our sponsors and participants. All of the funds raised from this event directly benefit conservation work here in our fifteen-county region.”

To learn more about this event or how you can become a member and support Three Rivers Land Trust in our conservation mission, please contact Michael Nye Fulk, Associate Director of the Land Trust at 704-647-0302 or michael@threeriverslandtrust.org.

 About Three Rivers Land Trust

Three Rivers Land Trust works with private landowners and public agencies to conserve the most important natural, scenic, agricultural, and historic places in a 15-county region of the Piedmont and Sandhills. Since 1995, The Land Trust has worked to offer reasonable and attractive options to landowners who want to save their lands for future generations to enjoy. Our mission is to work thoughtfully and selectively with property owners to conserve our lands, vistas, and the essential nature of our region. For more information about Three Rivers Land Trust and to become a member, please contact The Land Trust at 704-647-0302 visit their website at www.threeriverslandtrust.org/donate.

Three Rivers Land Trust Awarded $584,100 for Farmland Conservation Project

Three Rivers Land Trust is excited to announce they were awarded a $584,100 grant from the North Carolina Agricultural Development and Farmland Preservation Trust Fund for the purchase of a conservation easement on a 320-acre farm in Cabarrus County. This property adjoins a 60-acre farm that has been permanently conserved.

“Projects like this one are a priority for our organization because we focus on protecting productive farmland,” states Executive Director Travis Morehead. “Over 95% of the soils on this farm are prime or statewide important farmland soils. Since 1995, we have protected over 15,000 acres of farmland in our 15-county region.”

The primary products produced on this farm are beef and poultry.  In addition, this farm also focuses on agritourism, with a very popular wedding venue. The farmer and his wife along with his two sons and their spouses all work on the farm and all of the family members have a role to play. The entire family agreed that they wanted this land to stay a farm for perpetuity.

This project is phase one of a two phase project, and the second phase will see an additional 500 acres protected if funding is awarded next year. The state funding provides 25% of the cost of the purchase of the easement, and we will apply for matching funds from the USDA for an additional 50% of the cost this coming year. The landowner will be donating 25% of the easement value.

“Located in Cabarrus County, a rapidly developing county, the threat of development to this farm from the growth is very high. Protecting the family farm with a perpetual conservation easement ensures that this land can continue to be farmed for generations to come” states Crystal Cockman, Director of Conservation.

To learn more about how to protect your own property, or how to support Three Rivers Land Trust in our conservation mission, contact Crystal Cockman at 704-647-0302 or crystal@threeriverslandtrust.org

Three Rivers Land Trust permanently conserves 200 acres in Montgomery County on Drowning Creek

Three Rivers Land Trust (TRLT) is excited to announce the conservation of a 200-acre property located in Montgomery County in partnership with the North Carolina Clean Water Management Trust Fund. The landowners worked with TRLT to place the parcel under a permanent conservation easement in August of 2020. This conservation easement protects the property permanently from subdivision and development, ensures that the hardwood forest buffer remains intact, and the uplands remain as a working longleaf pine forest.

“We are excited that Ann and Tommie Rogers chose to work with TRLT to permanently conserve their property,” states Executive Director Travis Morehead. “This conserved property is located along Drowning Creek, a primary water supply for many Moore County residents. TRLT is committed to working with willing property owners to conserve tracts like this while they are still undeveloped.”

“Drowning Creek, is a high-quality watershed with several rare aquatic species found in the stream,” states Crystal Cockman, Director of Conservation. “By conserving this property, we are not only protecting important wildlife habitat in the increasingly-fragmented Sandhills region, but are also protecting the excellent water quality in the Drowning Creek watershed and the tributaries that flow through this property.” The North Carolina Clean Water Management Trust Fund provided funding for the riparian conservation easement on the Rogers property, and the Rogers donated an easement on the uplands.

The area presents an unusual combination of Piedmont and Coastal Plain ecology. Northern pine snakes, nonvenomous snakes which are endemic to the region, are known to occur nearby. The Drowning Creek watershed also contains native hardwood trees, and rocky outcrops and mountain laurel can be found along it. Prescribed fire is a management tool used here, which enhances important longleaf pine forest habitat. The North Carolina Sandhills are one of the last holdouts of native longleaf pine in the country – nationwide, three percent of the area that was once longleaf pine forest remains. Longleaf pine forests provide key habitat for a variety of species that characterize the North Carolina landscape, many of which are endangered or threatened.

Forest, wetland and farmland conservation have been a focus of TRLT since our inception, having protected more than 40,000 acres, with over 15,000 acres of farmland conserved, and 283 miles of river and stream frontage conserved since 1995.

To learn more about how to protect your own property, or how to support Three Rivers Land Trust in our conservation mission, contact Crystal Cockman at 704-647-0302 or crystal@threeriverslandtrust.org

Leopold Society Nature Bingo!

Leopold Society Nature Bingo!

We’ve created two scavenger hunts, one for the Piedmont and one for the Sandhills! Print the cards and circle the things you find – when you get four in a row you can post your completed scorecard on social media with the hashtag #ExploreWithTRLT and we’ll give you a shout-out on our own social media pages!

 

Three Rivers Land Trust ensures protection for historic Boone Homeplace in Davie County

Three Rivers Land Trust (TRLT) is thrilled to announce the completion of a project permanently protecting 82 acres of farmland in Davie County. In partnership with the North Carolina Agricultural Development and Farmland Preservation Trust Fund, who provided partial funding, this farm is now under a conservation easement, restricting the future development of the land and ensuring it will always remain a farm.

“We are happy to continue the long tradition of conserving local family farms. We are especially excited about forming new partnerships, not only with the property owner but also with Davie County Soil and Water Conservation District,” states Executive Director Travis Morehead. This easement is co-held by TRLT and Davie Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD), and is the first easement ever held by Davie SWCD. There is also an interesting historical link with this project.

This particular piece of land is unique in its connection to American pioneer Daniel Boone, whose family first settled in the area more than 200 years ago.  Boone met and married his wife, Rebecca Bryan Boone, in the summer of 1756.  The couple built a log a cabin and established their homestead a mile and a half southeast of Farmington, along Sugar Creek.  It is in this location that the Boones started their family, with five of their ten children being born here.  This site is believed to be located on this protected farm, known to historians as the “Daniel Boone Sugar Tree Creek Homeplace,” and from here Boone began his westward exploration.  Daniel and Rebecca raised their family here for more than a decade before moving on to what is now Wilkes County and ultimately on to Kentucky.

“I speak for all of the Davie Soil and Water Conservation District Board and employees when I say that we are very excited about the finalization of this important conservation easement. This easement will preserve the beautiful farmland for years and years to come. Development is very important for the growth of our community, but undisturbed natural landscape is equally so and our partnership with Three Rivers Land Trust will prove to be an invaluable resource for conservation now and into the future,” states Kevin S. Marion, Davie Soil and Water Conservation District Chairman.

“Protecting our natural resources, including fertile farmland, is more important than ever as recent American Farmland Trust statistics indicate that North Carolina is the second most susceptible state for conversion of farmland to other uses,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler. “The United Nations predicts that food production will need to increase 75 to 100 percent by 2050 to meet the increasing demand from a growing population. Protecting farmland such as this site now will be critical to meet our future food needs. As a grandfather, I am grateful for these forward-focused conservation efforts.”

“Continuing the legacy of agriculture on the farm and protecting the historic significance of this site is important to this landowner, and now that heritage will be preserved permanently,” states TRLT Director of Conservation Crystal Cockman. “Farmland conservation has been a focus of TRLT since our inception, having protected more than 15,000 acres of farmland since 1995.”

Contact

Phone

(704) 647-0302

Address

204 East Innes Street, Suite 280
Salisbury, NC 28144

Email

threerivers@threeriverslandtrust.org