The Illinois River watershed has over 1,000 miles of streams and covers over 1 million acres in the Ozark Highlands region of western Arkansas and eastern Oklahoma. Karst features, such as sinkholes, spring-fed streams, and caves, are common across the region. The historical ecology included hardwood and pine forests, savannas, and tall grass prairies.
Today, most of the land use consists of agriculture and expanding urban/ residential areas. Poultry and cattle are the primary agricultural land uses; pastureland and hay fields being common. This region, like many across Missouri, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and the region depend on partnerships that improve water quality, wildlife habitat, and the productivity of private lands.
Fayetteville, the site of the Private Lands Partners Day 2022, lies in the heart of a region with double-digit annual population growth, one of the fastest in the Southeastern United States, as well as extensive public and private lands used for hunting, fishing, recreation, and agriculture. This tremendous urban growth puts enormous pressure on natural resources, water quality, agriculture, and the rural character and way of life of this region. Partners here have worked together with landowners for many years to identify, protect, and improve lands of high value from an ecological, agricultural, and historical perspective. The 2022 Private Lands Partners Day (PLPD) is a two-day event, which will bring together private landowner leaders and partners from around Arkansas and across the country to share their personal experiences with cooperative efforts to conserve rural working landscapes along with habitat for fish and wildlife.
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About the host: Partnerscapes was established in 2008 and incorporated as Partners for Conservation in 2010, Partnerscapes embodies a grassroots movement of private landowners working with agencies, non-profit organizations, and policymakers to collaborate on conservation projects to sustain our working landscapes for present and future generations. Partnerscapes represents the voices of 21st century conservation and the collective effort to support working landscapes through voluntary, incentive-based public and private programs. Partnerscapes is a highly functional, well-respected national organization operating with a small core staff, active Board of Directors, partner organizations and agencies. Partnerscapes has a growing presence across the 50 states. Partnerscapes’ program work and growth reflect highly held values and an exceptional reputation.
The Five Pillars of Partnerscapes