Albany, NY – The Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission released its Draft Management Plan Update for public review and comment on October 4, 2016.
A public hearing is scheduled for tomorrow, Tuesday, Oct. 25, from 7:00-9:00pm, at the Albany Pine Bush Discovery Center, 195 New Karner Road, Albany, NY to gather public comment on this document.
People can participate at the hearing and/or provide written comments via email to [email protected] or standard mail to: Management Plan, Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission, 195 New Karner Road, Albany, NY 12205. The comment period of the Draft Management Plan Update ends at the close of business November 25, 2016. The Draft Management Plan Update is available for public review at public offices and libraries around the Capital Region. A list of these locations is available by calling the Commission (518-456-0655) or from its website at www.AlbanyPineBush.org/commission/management-plan
“This draft document updates the 2010 Pine Bush Management Plan and Final Environmental Impact Statement,” Executive Director Christopher A. Hawver said in a statement. “It identifies and further refines the Commission’s goals and challenges for land protection, natural resource management, public education, outreach, recreation and preserve operations. No substantive changes are proposed in the Draft Management Plan Update to recommendations for preserve protection, management or associated environmental impacts. The recommendations in the Draft Plan Update balance environmental and community needs and are based on scientific criteria and over 25 years of experience in managing the Pine Bush Preserve. In updating and developing a reasonable plan we are building on many of our successful partnerships, and the principle that everyone can and should work together to protect and enjoy the benefits of this globally-rare National Natural Landmark.”
The 1988 Legislation that established the Albany Pine Bush Preserve and the Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission, requires that the Preserve Management Plan be reviewed and, if necessary, updated every five years. The Draft Management Plan Update is a minor revision of the 2010 Management Plan. This document refines education, outreach and communication recommendations; provides an updated five year operating plan and updates the Invasive and Overabundant Species Management Plan. The Draft Plan also updates the Preserve’s descriptive statistics (e.g. acres managed) and Preserve Designations (e.g. National Natural Landmark, Important Bird Area, National Heritage Site, etc.). As no substantive changes are proposed in the Draft Management Plan Update, the action has been classified as a State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) Type II Action consistent with 6 NYCRR Part 617.
The Draft Management Plan Update was written to provide people who have an interest in the Albany Pine Bush with an opportunity to participate in planning for its future.
The Albany Pine Bush Preserve, more than 3,200 acres located in New York’s Capital District, protects one of the largest of only 20 remaining inland pitch-pine scrub oak barrens in the world. The fire-dependent ecosystem provides habitat for many plants and animals and supports 69 New York State-designated wildlife Species of Greatest Conservation Need, including the endangered Karner blue butterfly (named by Russian author Vladimir Nabokov).
The Albany Pine Bush Preserve is a National Natural Landmark, Hudson River Valley National Heritage Area Site, a New York State Unique Area, Bird Conservation Area and a National Audubon Society Important Bird Area. Characterized by rolling sand dunes and miles of trails, the preserve offers visitors a variety of recreational opportunities including hiking, bird watching, cross-country skiing, horseback riding, mountain biking, hunting, fishing and canoeing. The Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission is a public-private partnership created by the NYS Legislature in 1988 to protect and manage the APBP and provide the public with educational and recreational opportunities.
As the gateway to the Pine Bush, the Discovery Center is a state-of-the-art “green” certified interpretive center where visitors come to learn more about the rare ecology and history of the Pine Bush, and is meant to facilitate learning through interactive exhibits, an outdoor Discovery Trail, and continuing programs on the ecology, natural history, cultural history and management of the Pine Bush.
The Center is open daily weekdays 9 a.m.-4 p.m., weekends and most holidays 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; for more information, visit www.AlbanyPineBush.org or call 518-456-0655.