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The acreage of natural areas managed by the Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission has surpassed 70,000 acres.

The commission recently acquired a 636.3-acre tract as an addition to Warren Prairie Natural Area in southern Arkansas. Total cost was $1.2 million with $930,000 paid for with a U.S. Forest Service Forest Legacy grant.

The remainder was paid from Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Council grant funds. This brings the total acres under the Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission system of natural areas to 70,548.81 acres.

Warren Prairie, located in Bradley and Drew counties, consists of a mosaic of salt slick barrens, saline soil barrens, prairie mound woodlands, pine woodlands and bottomland hardwood forest communities. The saline soil habitats support the state’s largest population of the federally threatened plant geocarpon as well as the state’s largest wintering population of Henslow’s sparrow.

The area also supports a small population of the federally endangered red-cockaded woodpecker.

Print Headline: Natural Heritage land reaches acre milestone

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