32,396-acre WV habitat restoration expands effort to reintroduce elk to Appalachia

The Conservation Fund is set to create a 32,396-acres habitat for elk restoration in southern West Virginia in partnership with the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources.

The forestland is along the Tomblin Wildlife Management Area, and DNR expects the project to support working forests and forestry-based jobs as well as increase tourism opportunities, wildlife-related recreation and public hunting.

This purchase and the first-of-its-kind elk restoration program in West Virginia is an investment in the economic development and future vitality of the state,” said Joe Hankins, vice President for The Conservation Fund. “We’re proud to be a partner with the DNR in this effort to conserve an important and promising landscape, create new opportunities on land that once supported the state through it resources, and redefine conservation to provide multiple tangible economic and environmental benefits for local communities.

As tourism continues to grow in West Virginia, this will be a wonderful new opportunity for outdoor recreation that both our residents and visitors can enjoy,” Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin said. “I appreciate the cooperative efforts of everyone who helped make this project possible.

With this conservation effort, West Virginia joins a multi-state landscape level effort to restore elk to the Appalachian region.

Photo credit: Dollar Photo Club

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