Another piece of Pennsylvania elk country is permanently protected and open to public access thanks to a collaborative effort by the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and the Pennsylvania Game Commission (PGC).
The Woodring Farm II project entails 37 acres and is the newest addition to State Game Lands 311. It is located near a project finalized in 2014 and marks the 13th RMEF land protection and access project in Pennsylvania elk country.
“Even though these three parcels amount to just 37 acres, every piece of the puzzle counts in expanding the total amount of elk habitat acreage protected in Pennsylvania,” said Blake Henning, RMEF chief conservation officer. “We appreciate our partners at the Pennsylvania Game Commission as well as RMEF members and volunteers for their continual support.”
The property lies within the heart of the Pennsylvania elk range in Elk County’s Benezette Township which boasts the highest elk population density in the state.
“This acquisition is critical as it protects a very popular public corridor for elk viewing. Public visitation to these viewing areas increases every year,” said Bryan Burhans, PGC executive director. “However, high-quality elk range is finite. This area is now protected perpetually thanks to our partners at RMEF and an anonymous donor.”
Funds generated from Pennsylvania elk tags and the anonymous donation to RMEF provided funding for the project.
Since 1991, RMEF and its partners completed 425 conservation and hunting heritage outreach projects in Pennsylvania with a combined value of more than $25 million. These projects protected or enhanced 26,907 acres of habitat and opened or improved public access to 10,152 acres.