Land Trust Accreditation Commision
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Vol. 2 | No. 2 | June 2009   


For past issues of Tall Timbers eNews, visit the eNews Archives


Wettest May on Record!

By Dr. Bill Palmer, Game Bird Management Research Director

Hen and broodWith normal to slightly above average survival continuing through winter and spring, the breeding populations are very good this year and we are positioned for another increasing year. Some positive signs are excellent habitat conditions and increasing cotton rat populations in the Red Hills Region and Albany Area. 

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Conservation Easements Frequently Asked Questions

By Kevin McGorty and Lane Green

Tall Timbers began holding donated conservation easements through its land conservancy in 1992. Today, it is one of the largest regional land trusts in the nation in acres conserved, holding 77 easements on 110,000 acres of land in north Florida and southwest Georgia. This year, Tall Timbers was awarded national accreditation by the Land Trust Accreditation Commission. As such, the Commission recognizes Tall Timbers as a land trust that has “demonstrated their commitment to national quality standards for nonprofit management and land conservation.” 

As conservation easements are becoming a popular method of keeping land in family ownership and rural use, we are often asked by landowners to clarify what easements are and what they allow and don’t allow. Below are some of the questions we have received.

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Tagged Loggerhead Shrike

Avian Abattoir

By Jim Cox,  Vertebrate Ecologist

The butcher bird of the Red Hills is finally getting some attention. This mockingbird-sized songbird goes by the professional name of Loggerhead Shrike, but locals often call it the butcher bird because of the bird’s curious habitat of hanging prey on barbed wire fences and broken off limbs. The sight of grasshoppers, lizards, and even small birds seen dangling from a wire fence are sure indications of shrike activity.

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2009 Florida Legislative session recap

Tall Timbers planning staff was actively involved in monitoring and lobbying several bills of importance to Red Hills’ landowners and Tall Timbers.  These bills include:

House Bill 7157 – Real property used for conservation purposes
House Bill 7157 was the enabling legislation for Florida Constitutional Amendment 4, which provides ad valorem tax relief for land permanently protected by conservation easement. The Legislature passed this bill.  According to HB 7157, to receive a 100 percent exemption from ad valorem taxation, the following criteria must apply: 

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Another Side to the Carbon Credit Coin

David Ray, Forestry Scientist

The basic theory underlying emerging markets for carbon sequestration by forests was presented in a recent issue of Tall Timbers E-News (Pope and Maine). Forest landowners of all stripes are curious about what this new income opportunity might mean for them, and rightly so. The justification for carbon trading is mitigating the negative impacts of climate change. Trading does have the potential to reward a public service that may be provided by private forests. Forest economists have long struggled to find ways to compensate forest landowners for ‘ecosystem services’ that extend beyond the boundaries of their ownership: clean air and water, biodiversity conservation, and open space values, to name a few. Carbon credits may well turn out to be the first widely accessible incarnation of this type of market.

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The mission of Tall Timbers Research Station & Land Conservancy is to foster exemplary land stewardship through research, conservation and education.