|Grantee||Southern Plains Land Trust, inc. ↗|
|Target||Black-footed ferret, American bison, Lesser prairie-chicken|
Through this land acquisition project, the Southern Plains Land Trust (SPLT) will expand our Heartland Ranch Nature Preserve in Bent County in southeastern Colorado, from its current size of 24,774 acres to 42,661 acres. Alongside advancing shortgrass prairie preservation broadly, increasing Heartland Ranch’s extent to this landscape-scale is vital for implementing high-priority conservation projects. SPLT’s top projects on Heartland Ranch are: recovering the American bison; protecting black-tailed prairie dogs and reintroducing their obligate species, the endangered black-footed ferret; protecting prairie elk; rehabilitating streamside areas and their ecosystem engineer, the American beaver; and safeguarding grassland birds, including the imperiled lesser prairie-chicken. Grasslands are among the world’s most endangered ecosystems, and we have the opportunity to make a significant leap forward to protect southern plains grasslands through this acquisition.