Tennessee Wildlife Federation’s conservation efforts created 50 acres of newly restored wetland habitat and conserved an additional 190 acres for natural habitats in Hardin County.
Critical Habitat for Wildlife Protected
In Hardin County, 50-acres of low-productivity agricultural land has been restored to vibrant wetland along the banks of the Tennessee River. An additional 190 acres was conserved, protecting it from future development.
Tennessee Wildlife Federation oversaw and implemented the project. Its Habitat Restoration and Conservation program restores critical wildlife habitat in all four major habitat types in Tennessee—streams, wetlands, grasslands, and forests. Wetlands are critical for water filtration and flood control, and provide important wildlife habitat.
“More than half of all the wetlands in Tennessee have been destroyed. That makes each and every acre restored all the more important. The Federation has restored over 100 acres of wetland and has another 600 acres in the works.”Chris Roberts, director of conservation at Tennessee Wildlife Federation
In Hardin County, the Federation worked with Mark Mascolo, a private landowner and supporter of the Federation’s Hunting and Fishing Academy.
The wetland rehabilitation included land grading to allow water to saturate the soils rather than drain quickly into the river. Also, nearly 20,000 seedlings of various tree and shrub species from regional nurseries were planted.
“The goal of the plantings is to help transition the site to a high quality wetland typical of the region,” said Roberts.
In addition to restoring the 50-acre site, the Federation partnered with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service to conserve an additional 190 acres of important upland habitat on the Mascolo property.
The result will be a refuge for wildlife—particularly amphibians and birds—and a variety of flora.