Land Trust News

Kelly Kountz Photo / Courtesy of Gallatin Valley Land Trust

Bitterroot Conservation Easement Protects Wildlife Corridor “Funnel”

Anna Mae Paddock appreciates family legacy, agricultural opportunities, open lands, wildlife habitat and wildlife viewing, and she was able to perpetuate all that and more working with Bitter Root Land Trust and the Ravalli County Open Land Program to place a conservation easement on her 220 acre Paddock Ranch.

The property, nestled under Lake Como near Darby, supports a variety of wildlife and the Ravalli Republic article quotes BRLT’s Kyle Barber as saying, “One of the cool pieces of this property is the wildlife that moves through this place. This is pretty much the narrowest stretch of the valley here…It’s like a funnel that comes down for wildlife.” The parcel is in the middle of three other properties that have already been protected by conservation easements.

Anna Mae’s family arrived in the Bitterroot Valley by covered wagon in 1900, and now 120 years later she has worked to create the first Bitterroot Valley county open land bond project in 2020. “I would like to put the property into conservation because I would like the remaining property to remain undeveloped,” she wrote in a letter to BRLT. “The view of the Como Peaks is breathtaking. It is so quiet and serene. I would like the property to remain the same as it is today, to be used for livestock grazing and crops. There is an abundance of wildlife on the property.” Congratulations, BRLT and the Paddock family.