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TPWD – Texas Longleaf Team
June 15, 2022 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
The Texas Longleaf Team is an inter-agency, multi-disciplinary consortium formed in 2014 to promote and support the restoration of the Longleaf ecosystem in East Texas. The Longleaf Pine (Pinus palustris) ecosystem is one of the rarest plant communities in the West Gulf Coastal Plain and southeastern United States; less than 3% remains of the southeastern landscape that was formerly longleaf pine. In East Texas, it is estimated that approximately 45,000 acres of the original 3 million acres (less than 2%) remains.
This forest community is globally important for migratory birds, resident wildlife, and a host of rare or declining plants and animals. The primary ecological process that maintains this ecosystem is fire. A well-managed upland pine savannah that includes frequent prescribed fire has the potential to produce and sustain habitat for rare species such as the Red-cockaded Woodpecker, Bachman’s Sparrow, Henslow’s Sparrow, and the Louisiana Pine Snake. Fire is an essential process that will produce the herbaceous understory required by these species. In addition to these rare species, well-burned pine savannahs benefit other species like Eastern Wild Turkey and Northern Bobwhite Quail, both popular game species that are declining across the West Gulf Coastal Plain of East Texas.
Due to its ecological, historical and cultural importance, restoration of the longleaf pine ecosystem has become a regional and a Texas conservation priority; building for over four decades, longleaf restoration is now taking place on public and private lands throughout the southeastern United States, including Texas.
Bio: Jenny Sanders serves as the Coordinator of the Texas Longleaf Team. She brings unique skills and experience to the Longleaf Team, starting with her M.S. program, which explored motivations for landowner participation in conservation programs, and later as the Conservation Program Coordinator for the Texas Wildlife Association. In that position, Jenny worked to build and nurture partnerships with state and federal agencies, other non-profits and private interests in large scale conservation efforts, including the Leon River Restoration Project, Trinity River Initiative, Edwards Aquifer Recovery Implementation Program, and more. More recently, Jenny worked in the communications realm, promoting constituent and landowner engagement in advocacy initiatives and implementation of conservation easements. Jenny enjoys serving as a spokesperson for programs she is passionate about, and restoration of native ecosystems in a way that supports landowner goals and success is certainly a passion.
Jenny loves serving as a conduit of support for East Texas landowners in their efforts to steward their piece of Texas. Jenny lives in Lufkin with her husband, Robert, sons, Nate (12) and Cade (8), and black lab, Chase.
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VMS – AT: TPWD State Parks