New York State has purchased 518 acres of land in northern Oneida County which will become the area’s newest state forest, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Joe Martens announced today. The acquisition in the Town of Forestport will protect almost a mile of Black River shoreline, just outside the Adirondack Park.
According to the press announcement, the state paid $385,400 for the land, which came from the Environmental Protection Fund. The property will be its own named state forest, as it is not adjacent to other state forests and will remain on local property tax rolls. The property is characterized by shady ravines with several springs that run year round, northern hardwood and coniferous forests, bogs with rare plants like pitcher plants and forested wetlands. The area is adjacent to conservation easement lands that protect the Town of Forestport water wells and will provide added protection for the Town’s water supply.
“Governor Cuomo and his administration recognize that this acquisition protects undeveloped forest and shoreline adjacent to the Black River, in a location which was the site of a former private trout raising facility,” Commissioner Martens said in a statement released to the press today. “Keeping this property as forested land furthers the Black River Valley Corridor priority conservation project identified in the New York State Open Space Conservation Plan. Parcels of forest along the river like this help to facilitate movement of wildlife and plant species between the Adirondacks and Tug Hill for a variety of reasons including genetic exchange within a species and biodiversity.”
This is the second land purchase from Dominic and Edna Carbone of Forestport which continues the protection of the Black River Valley Corridor, DEC said. In March of 2008, New York State purchased 1,840 acres of conservation easement lands also along the Black River in the towns of Boonville and Forestport. These lands are adjacent to existing state forest lands and a portion of the easement adjacent to the Black River. DEC Region 6 spokesperson Stephen Litwhiler told the Almanack that the new state property has been surveyed. Signs are not yet posted, but are expected by spring.
In today’s press statement Robert Seager, resident of Forestport and representing Oneida County on the Open Space Advisory Committee, said: “This is a good purchase that protects the unique springs and wetlands and provides for public recreation on the property. This land protection also aligns with the local comprehensive plan for protecting the rural character and integrity of the town.”
Photo courtesy Town of Forestport. Map courtesy DEC Region 6.