PDLT Protects Mary Longs in Horry County
On December 18, 2018, Pee Dee Land Trust (PDLT) completed a conservation easement agreement on over 670 acres in Horry County. The Mary Longs Tract adjoins property owned and managed by the SC Department of Natural Resources and enhances the conservation of the public property by ensuring habitat connectivity and water quality in the Little Pee Dee River floodplain.
The property boasts 268 acres of working pine forests, along with 347 acres of bottomland hardwoods, cypress swamps and multiple oxbow lakes. There are over 172 acres of prime soils and soils of statewide importance for agricultural use. This property also provides open space for the scenic enjoyment of the general public by protecting the rural scenic view along Pee Dee Highway.
Seth Cook, Director of Land Protection, stated that “larger tracts are becoming fewer and fewer and being able to protect such a diverse property is a real win in the Pee Dee Watershed.”
PDLT partnered with the US Fish and Wildlife to assist with our baseline report. Numerous species of trees and shrubs were documented that provide habitat for a wide variety of wildlife including mammals, migratory songbirds, birds of prey, wading birds, amphibians and reptiles. Mary Longs also is in the range of and contains potential habitat for several federal at-risk species including the Atlantic and shortnose sturgeon, blueback herring, and the spotted turtle. Overall, the protection of the Mary Longs Tract will further conservation efforts and protect migratory corridors for wildlife in support of regional and national bird conservation objectives.
“PDLT prides ourselves on partnering with families to permanently protect and preserve their land,” said PDLT Executive Director, Lyles Cooper Lyles. “The Holliday Family is an exceptional example of family members coming together to create a true family conservation legacy.”
In response, William Holliday said that “the family was very pleased and proud to be part of such a thoroughly ecological group as Pee Dee Land Trust; the number of acres included in the trust is an inspiration, we hope it leads to more such agreements honoring the interconnections of all life.”
About Pee Dee Land Trust:
Pee Dee Land Trust focuses on the Pee Dee watershed, which covers nine+ counties of the Pee Dee region in South Carolina: Chesterfield, Darlington, Dillon, Florence, Georgetown, Horry, Marion, Marlboro, and Williamsburg. Its mission is to protect, and to promote an appreciation of, the significant natural, agricultural, and historical resources of the Pee Dee Region through voluntary land conservation and educational programs. Pee Dee Land Trust has a toolbox full of options to help landowners who are interested in conservation such as accepting donations of land or conservation easements. There are endless options of ways to support PDLT as an individual or as an organization, including annual Membership, event sponsorship, hosting experiences, donations to one of the endowments, land donations and planned estate giving opportunities.
With its 72nd conservation project to date, Pee Dee Land Trust has now protected over 27,544 acres in the Pee Dee Region. While remaining in private ownership, the lands protected through conservation easements held by PDLT ensure that special places will be available for farming, forestry, and recreation for future generations. Through the use of permanent agreements, PDLT and landowners work as partners to ensure that land use activities on private property are limited in order to preserve key conservation values which benefit the public. These values include open space such as rural scenic views along roads and rivers, habitat for wildlife including game and non-game species, and the protection of farm and forest land to ensure it remains in farming and forestry rather than being converted to other uses.