Bark of a shortleaf pine tree.
Shortleaf Pine Bark of a shortleaf pine tree. © © Greg Dimijian

Places We Protect

Summerfield Springs

Louisiana

This tract of land embodies what large portions of Northwest Louisiana used to looked like.

What makes this preserve unique?

The stands of relatively mature shortleaf pine/oak-hickory woodland on the ridges that grade into the floodplain of Corney Bayou provide an example of what large portions of Northwest Louisiana used to look like in the 1880s. Summerfield Springs was named after a series of springs that are found along the slopes of the preserve. The area is adjacent to the Corney Unit of the Caney District of Kisatchie National Forest, which is managed for multiple uses including native community restoration. Together those tracts are part of a large forested landscape and are within the watershed of Corney Bayou, a relatively unaltered stream system.  Shortleaf pine/oak-hickory woodland was once the dominant forest community in the hills of northern Louisiana but is now considered one of the most highly altered forest types in North America. Because there is no public access and there are no maintained trails, this preserve is not open for public visitation.

What TNC Has Done/Is Doing

TNC is focused on restoration and management of the native forest habitats found on the preserve as per the wishes of the donor, Catherine Sale. The conservation vision for this property is to restore the historic structure, composition, functional processes, and geographic extent of all associated natural communities, with an emphasis on the shortleaf pine/oak-hickory woodland that is the most altered habitat, due to past commercial timber management and lack of fire. We are accomplishing this restoration through application of aggressive restoration practices, including restoration timbering and herbicide treatments to remove off-site trees and brush, use of frequent prescribed fire.