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County gets grant to help restore 650 acres to natural habitat
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County gets grant to help restore 650 acres to natural habitat

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Catawba County was gifted 650 acres of former game lands in 2017.

Catawba County is planning to restore 650 acres of land to its natural state. A grant will help the county take the first step.

The county owns two pieces of land totaling about 650 acres off Hudson Chapel Road near the Catawba River. The land was bought by a developer, according to information from Catawba County Marketing and Communications Director Amy McCauley.

The developer gifted the county the land in 2017, McCauley said.

The county has a long-term plan to restore the property to its natural habitat. That could involve timbering, removing invasive species and controlled burns, McCauley said.

The first step to restore the land is to make a plan for restoration. The county was recently awarded a $16,360 Catawba-Wateree Habitat Enhancement Program grant from the N.C. Technical Review Committee of the U.S. Department of the Interior. The grant, with another $7,524 from the county will pay for the cost to create a plan.

The plan will lay out priorities for restoration.

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