Conservation Foundation purchases 20 acres within Charlotte Harbor Preserve State Park

Land situated at mouth of Tippecanoe Bay

This map shows the location of the land. Image courtesy Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast

The Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast, which is based in Osprey, has announced the permanent protection of a 20-acre inholding located within the Charlotte Harbor Preserve State Park in Port Charlotte.

“Inholding” is the term for a privately owned property “within the boundary of a national forest, state or national park, or similar publicly owned, protected area,” a news release explains. “The newly conserved property is situated at the mouth of Tippecanoe Bay on Sam Knight Creek, a tributary to the Charlotte Harbor,” the release adds. “Charlotte Harbor is an estuary of national significance and one of Florida’s most productive estuaries, providing a safe space for fish such as tarpon, snook, and redfish to breed and grow,” the release points out.

The Conservation Foundation purchased the 20-acre inholding for $29,330.70 at a deed tax auction on Dec. 12, the release adds. The purchase was completed with money from the nonprofit’s dedicated Land Fund, “which was established in 2017 to quicken the pace of land conservation here in Southwest Florida,” the release notes. The organization’s board of trustees “oversees the use of these funds to conserve priority land when other public and/or private funding is not available,” the release explains. The Foundation hopes to resell the property to the State of Florida as an addition to Charlotte Harbor Preserve State Park.

“Land conservation happens in a variety of ways,” Christine P. Johnson, president of the Conservation Foundation, said in the release. “Thanks to our dedicated Land Fund and all those who have contributed to it over the years, we were prepared to purchase as soon as this unique 20-acre property became available. Now, these 20 acres are forever protected for the benefit of both people and nature.”

“Charlotte Harbor Preserve State Park is Florida’s third-largest state park,” the release says. “It protects more than 100 miles of shoreline along Charlotte Harbor in Charlotte and Lee counties and consists primarily of mangrove forests, marshes, scrub habitats, and pine flatwoods.” The newly conserved 20 acres comprise “mangroves, wetlands, and a small upland area,” the release notes.