Commission Agenda Item No. 5
Presenters: Nathan Garner
Ted Hollingsworth

Land Conservation Strategy for East Texas
April 1, 2010

I. Executive Summary: Staff will brief the TPW Commission on efforts of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) to respond to declines in conservation and outdoor recreation opportunities in the pineywoods ecosystem of east Texas.

II. Discussion: Unprecedented changes in patterns of land ownership and land use are now occurring in east Texas. Timber companies have divested ownership of more than 2 million acres of land in the past few years. In many cases these lands are being further fragmented by private owners or developed, further reducing the ranges of endemic species, compromising the recovery of other species, and limiting public access to the outdoors for hunting, fishing and other recreational activities.

Staff of TPWD is monitoring these changes, and coordinating with other state and federal agencies, non-governmental organizations, land trusts, foundations and individuals, in an effort to reduce the long-term impacts of these changes on native species and public access to the outdoors.