The Brown County Hills project area provides The Nature Conservancy with the unique opportunity to protect more than 350,000 acres of relatively unchanged forest. Brown County Hills is the most popular outdoor recreation area in Indiana, with more than 1,000,000 people annually traveling to hike, camp, canoe, fish, hunt, and explore its steep hills and hollows.
The Nature Conservancy established the Brown County Hills Project in 2002 with a grant from the Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust. The aim of this project is to maintain a healthy and comprehensive habitat for Indiana's woodland creatures and plants, and to ensure that wildlife can survive in sufficient numbers to prevent species from becoming rare or threatened.
Since its establishment, the Brown County Hills Project has:
- permanently protected roughly 5,000 acres through land-acquisition and partnerships with Hoosier National Forest, Indiana DNR, and Sycamore Land Trust
- reforested more than 150 acres of bottomland hardwood forest
- educated more than 2,500 people through events and educational programs
- met with more than 100 private landowners who, in total, own over 11,000 acres
- reintroduced controlled burning at the Hitz-Rhodehamel Woods Preserve
Strategies used in the Brown County Hills forests include land-protection, stewardship, and research and education.
The long-term health of this region depends on the protection of its private lands and careful management of its public lands. Through continued partnerships and community involvement, we can ensure that the Brown County Hills project area remains a beautiful, healthy environment for future generations to protect and enjoy.
What do our land stewards do during the winter? Click here to find out.
Read about Wendy Anderson’s TNC summer work in the Prairie Pothole Region.
We've teamed up with the Student Conservation Association (SCA) to provide temporary internships for young people interested in natural resources. Follow this link to read Erica Wayne's relfection on her SCA internship.
By joining The Forest Bank, landowners ensure that their forest will be here for future generations to enjoy.
Read about our efforts to eliminate the threat of invasive species in the Brown County Hills region.
Learn about our efforts to stem the overabundance of beautiful, but destructive, Whitetail Deer at Brown County Hills.
The Brown County Hills region spans portions of 7 counties.
Learn about the preservation and development of Indiana's forests.
Learn about the migratory songbirds that make their journey to the Brown County Hills each year.
Find out what makes this state-endangered reptile so unique.
Learn about the importance of prescribed burns in the Brown County Hills region.
Learn about the central role of oak trees in the Brown County Hills forests, and our continuing efforts to protect them.
Join us for some hands-on conservation work at one of our nature preserves!