Chesterton Tribune

Porter County Izaak Walton praises transfer of prison land for wildlife

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The Porter County Chapter (PCC) of the Izaak Walton League is praising the Daniels administration on the recent transfer of surplus state prison farm land to the Indiana Department of Natural Resources to create the largest game bird habitat in the state.

President Jim Sweeney said the League was completely surprised by the move. “We had been scrambling to see what our options were to hopefully protect a portion of the land before it went to auction. To have the entire-1250 acre parcel transferred to the Department of Fish and Wildlife is fantastic.”

“This is an incredible development,” said member Tom Anderson. “This was announced just days after PCC closed on a piece of land on the East Branch of the Little Calumet River.”

League members suggest this acquisition and the transfer of the prison land could lead to an even larger effort that could improve water quality, the conservation of many plants and animals, and provide more public land for hunting and fishing and other recreation.

“Only 4 percent of Indiana is publicly owned and only a portion of that is for conservation purposes,” said Treasurer Terry McCloskey.

Sweeney added that this was not the first large conservation effort of Governor Mitch Daniels. “The Governor is to be commended for his leadership in making this project happen as well as at Goose Pond in southern Indiana and big projects on the Wabash and Muscatatuck Rivers.”

“We are looking forward to working with the DNR in developing this project,” said Anderson, “there is a lot that can be done with that much land and access to the East Branch (of the Little Calumet River.)”

 

Posted 12/28/2011