A significant step in protecting an amphibian species that only lives in Alabama was celebrated last week at the Forever Wild Red Hills Complex in Monroe County. However, the latest acquisition of almost 5,000 acres of Red Hills salamander habitat comes with many more benefits, including public recreational opportunities like additional hunting and fishing.
Representatives from the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (ADCNR), the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and The Nature Conservancy toured the Red Hills salamander’s specific habitat found only in steep bluffs in Alabama’s Red Hills region of Conecuh, Covington, Crenshaw, Butler, Monroe and Wilcox counties.
“This acquisition by the Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries (WFF) and Forever Wild through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the latest in the string of acquisitions that started a little more than 10 years ago,” said Chris Blankenship, ADCNR Commissioner. “It now totals a little more than 11,000 acres. I think it’s important to note that we’re not done. Our staff in Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries and State Lands, through Forever Wild, is continuing to work with the Alabama Forestry Commission and others to continue to add to the critical habitat that is in public ownership here.”