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Dolores, Colorado

40 Acres | July 23, 2004
K. Charles Hartranft, donor
Conservation Easement

The Hartranft Wildlife Sanctuary is 40 acres of high desert teeming with wildlife.  From mountain lions to prairie dogs, from coyotes to chipmunks, wild animals who call this home are free to thrive in their native habitat in Dolores Colorado.  At the Hartranft Wildlife Sanctuary there will be no further development, and recreational and commercial hunting and trapping are forever prohibited.

The expansiveness of this high desert property in Dolores, Colorado, makes it ideal habitat for far-ranging animals such as mountain lions and coyotes.  These species in particular are suffering from great habitat loss across not only Colorado but across the United States. And as a home to prairie dogs, a designated keystone species, the Hartranft Wildlife Sanctuary provides food and habitat for at least 59 other species, including 29 varieties of birds, 21 mammals, five reptiles, and four amphibians.

An irrigation canal running through the property provides habitat for beaver, and a deep canyon across one corner creates lookout ledges for hawks.

In 2005 Charles Hartranft signed a conservation easement with the Humane Society Wildlife Land Trust to protect his land and the wildlife who live there forever. He continues to live on the property, gardening and enjoying the wildlife, secure in the knowledge that he has provided permanent protection for the land and the animals who depend on it.

Although this sanctuary remains privately owned, the Humane Society Wildlife Land Trust has an obligation to perform periodic inspections to ensure that the wildlife habitat remains in good condition and that the terms of the conservation easements are being met.  These inspections, and the handling of any destruction or violations, cost heavily in professional staff time, consultants, and travel expenses. In addition HSWLT needs a reserve of funds for the substantial legal fees needed if enforcement of violations involves court action.

HSWLT has promised to protect this property as sanctuary forever -- and that promise will be kept.  If you can help with the cost of stewardship for this and the other properties HSWLT protects, please donate here.

Prairie Dogs Close-up

Prairie dogs are like a canary in the coal mine. If their population declines and dies, others will soon follow.

 

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