MISSOULA, Mont.–Far-sighted, conservation-minded landowners in Pennsylvania have permanently protected their 454-acre wildlife oasis through a conservation easement with the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation.

George and Irene Windolph of Nordmont, Pa., fully donated the easement, which removes development rights on their property in perpetuity. The move ensures the land will always be much like it is today–retired farmlands and well-managed forestlands with abundant populations of wildlife including deer, turkey and bear.

The property lies about 40 miles east of Pennsylvania’s current elk range.

RMEF will hold the easement and monitor provisions annually.

“The Windolphs love this pristine place and have entrusted RMEF to help protect it forever,” said David Allen, RMEF president and CEO. “They also have worked hard to acquire the majority of mineral rights so that poorly executed oil and gas drilling will never happen here.”

He added, “We’re grateful for George and Irene’s generous donation. Their conservation values are a reflection of our membership and what it means to belong to RMEF.”

Life members of RMEF, the Windolphs will retain control over access to their property.

Nationwide, RMEF now holds 182 conservation easements permanently protecting a combined 248,784 acres of habitat. The organization’s mission is to ensure the future of elk, other wildlife and their habitat.

About the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation:
RMEF is leading a conservation initiative that has protected or enhanced habitat on over 6 million acres–an area larger than Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, Glacier, Yosemite, Rocky Mountain and Great Smoky Mountains national parks combined. RMEF also is a strong voice for hunters in access, wildlife management and conservation policy issues. RMEF members, partners and volunteers, working together as Team Elk, are making a difference all across elk country. Join us at www.rmef.org or 800-CALL ELK.