Planting Location: This project will provide outreach and technical support for landowners in 37 South Georgia Counties within the historical range of the longleaf pine landscape. 4 LIT's and Georgia's Sentinel Landscape overlap with this focal area.
Project Description/Objective: This effort will engage non-industrial private forest landowners to better manage high priority longleaf sites with the main goal of promoting prescribed fire throughout South Georgia. Dense, overstocked pine stands, and high fuel loads are a threat to forested landscapes in Georgia; as these conditions increase susceptibility to wildfires, forest health issues, and loss of critical habitat. Engaging family forest owners in improving these forested landscapes will improve habitat for at-risk wildlife. The project will have a particular interest in major and minor longleaf pine stands as well as other priority habitat across the region.
With help from the many partnerships, we aim to enhance restoration on high-priority longleaf sites throughout this diverse landscape. Through local collaboration, partners will provide outreach and assistance to approximately 300 forest owners in improving management practices to high-priority habitats in a 37-county focal area in South Georgia.
Ecological Benefits: We will be focusing on improving and managing habitat for the gopher tortoise which is a Keystone species and will therefore aid many other species including the red-cockaded woodpecker, the bobwhite quail, Bachman’s sparrow and the Eastern indigo snake among others.
Community Benefits: This project area was selected by comparing demographic information in addition to the historical range of longleaf pine and associated habitat. The median age is 38-42 years, poverty rates average 20-24%, greater than 60% of the population is non-white, and the average annual income is less than $45,000. Based on 2020 census data over 15% of the population in these counties is considered “at risk” which includes the elderly, people with disabilities, or households without an automobile. By focusing outreach and financial opportunities in these counties we feel that we can help to lessen the strain felt by a percentage of these families who are also landowners trying to build generational wealth.
Types of Trees: Longleaf Pine
Number of Trees Donated by Noble Oak: 14,405