Sen. Dean Burke (R – Bainbridge) announced February 28 that the Post-Hurricane Michael Longleaf Pine Restoration project proposal has been selected by the Georgia Outdoor Stewardship Board of Trustees to the Second-level Application stage of the Conserve Georgia grant. Upon approval of the next stage, the Post-Hurricane Michael Longleaf Pine Restoration project will be awarded $60,500. The funds will be available starting later this year.
The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) plans to use the funds to replant containerized longleaf seedlings on 500 acres of storm-damaged pine stands on Silver Lake and Chickasawhatchee Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs). This will address the urgent need to reforest and replant mature pine stands that were impacted by Hurricane Michael on the two largest WMAs in Southwest Georgia.
“Longleaf Pine takes years to harvest, and we lost years of work and thousands of dollars worth of it because of Hurricane Michael,” said Sen. Burke. “Additionally, Longleaf provides an ideal habitat for several different species of wildlife, including birds and snakes. This grant would not only reforest acres of land, but also improve acres of wildlife habitat. I am thankful for programs, such as the Georgia Outdoor Stewardship Program, which help to conserve and protect Georgia’s outdoors.”
Conserve Georgia grants are awarded through the Georgia Outdoor Stewardship Program (GOSP). GOSP is Georgia’s first source of dedicated funding for the conservation of priority lands, the stewardship of state parks and wildlife management areas, and the support of local parks and trails. The Georgia Outdoor Stewardship Program provides support to state and local parks and trails, stewardship of conservation land and acquires critical areas for provision or protection. This mission is accomplished through the distribution of funds through the Conserve Georgia Grant, which is an initiative for the care and use of Georgia’s natural resources.
To learn more about the Georgia Outdoor Stewardship Program, please visit: https://gadnr.org/gosp.