Two of New Hampshire's Best Trout Ponds Protected
Two of New Hampshire's best trout ponds will be protected in the latest effort to ensure outdoor recreation and timber jobs in the Androscoggin River Headwaters, The Trust for Public Land and several partners announced today.
The ponds are in a 934-acre property that The Trust for Public Land bought for $2.475 million and then sold it to the state.
"Greenough Pond and Little Greenough Pond are two of the only three remaining wild trout ponds in the state and they offer some of the best trout fishing in New Hampshire," said Rodger Krussman, New Hampshire director of The Trust for Public Land.
The state will make the property open to the public for fishing and hunting. The property is also popular for snowmobiling, with more than three miles of state-maintained snowmobile trails.
The ponds were purchased from Plum Creek as part of an overall effort to protect 31,000 acres of land in the Androscoggin Headwaters in the northern end of the state. "The goal is to ensure sustainable working timberlands, protect water quality and wildlife habitat, and expand access to public recreation lands—benefiting not only the local communities in northern New Hampshire, but the thousands of visitors to the region every year," said Krussman.
The Trust for Public Land, a national conservation organization, has been working with Plum Creek since 2007 in the Androscoggin region. The 934 acres will create a new Greenough Ponds State Wildlife Management Area. Earlier, 7,400 acres had been purchased by the federal government for additions to the Umbagog National Wildlife Refuge. Still under discussion are another 23,000 acres of conservation easements on Plum Creek land, meaning the company could own it and produce timber from it, but the land couldn't be developed.
"Protection of the Greenough Ponds is a high priority because it secures access for anglers, hunters, snowmobilers and paddlers in one of the most pristine locations in the state," said Glenn Normandeau, Executive Director of New Hampshire Fish and Game.
"Plum Creek has helped conserve more than 1 million acres nationwide, and we are pleased to partner to conserve this New Hampshire land that has exceptional ecological, wildlife and recreational values," said Paul Davis, vice president of Plum Creek's Northern Hardwood region. "We recognize the efforts of The Trust for Public Land and the State of New Hampshire in making this conservation project successful."
The $2.475 million to pay for the land came from a variety of sources, including $650,000 from the New Hampshire Land and Community Heritage Investment Program; $600,000 from the Open Space Institute; $300,000 from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation's Acres for America Program; $100,000 from the Neil and Louise Tillotson Fund of the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation; and other public and private money. NH Fish and Game contributed $675,000 to the acquisition from the Department's fisheries and wildlife habitat accounts and the Granite Reliable Power wind farm mitigation fund.
Founded in 1972, The Trust for Public Land is the leading nonprofit working to conserve land for people. Operating from more than 30 offices nationwide, The Trust for Public Land has protected more than three million acres from the inner city to the wilderness and helped generate more than $34 billion in public funds for conservation. Nearly ten million people live within a ten-minute walk of a Trust for Public Land park, garden, or natural area, and millions more visit these sites every year.
Plum Creek is one of the largest landowners in the nation and the most geographically diverse, with approximately 6.7 million acres of timberlands in major timber producing regions of the United States and wood products manufacturing facilities in the Northwest. For more information, visit www.plumcreek.com.
The New Hampshire Land and Community Heritage Investment Program is a state authority whose purpose is to conserve New Hampshire's most important natural, cultural and historic resources. Its work is funded through a dedicated fee on real estate transfers and revenue from the moose license plate. Since the year 2000, the program has awarded 240 grants to 107 communities to help conserve more than 212,000 acres and 142 historic structures and sites (www.lchip.org).
The Open Space Institute manages the Transborder Land Protection Fund, established to protect ecologically significant forested landscapes in the Northern Appalachian/Acadian eco-region, an 80 million acre region spanning the boundaries of the eastern United States and Canada, and Saving New England Wildlife Fund, established with a lead grant from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation to protect wildlife habitat.
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation's Acres for America Program has been established to provide public access to the outdoors, conserve critical wildlife habitat, connect protected lands, and support rural economies.