Land Preserved on Fishing Creek in Nash and Halifax Counties

February 14, 2013

Tar River Land Conservancy recently acquired three properties totaling 49 acres along Fishing Creek in Nash and Halifax Counties to preserve wildlife habitat and water quality. The land purchases were made possible by funding from the North Carolina Attorney General’s Environmental Enhancement Grant Program, Eddie and Jo Allison Smith Family Foundation, Defenders of Wildlife, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The Conservancy will manage the undeveloped properties to preserve floodplain forest habitat and enhance native plant communities.

Murray-WilsonTract_floodplainforest“Fishing Creek has been a primary focus for us since our group was formed in 2000,” stated Derek Halberg, the Conservancy’s Executive Director. “This watershed provides the best remaining habitat in the United States for several endangered fish and wildlife species.” Two notable species that reside in Fishing Creek are the Tar River Spiny Mussel and the Carolina Madtom – a small native catfish found only in a handful of North Carolina streams.

Including the recent purchases, the Conservancy has protected 1,729 acres along Fishing and Little Fishing Creek through land purchases and conservation easements. Fishing Creek is the largest tributary of the Tar River, draining an 894-square mile area from its headwaters northeast of the Henderson in Vance County to its confluence with the Tar River near the Tarboro in Edgecombe County. Fishing Creek supplies drinking water to two communities along the way – the towns of Warrenton and Enfield.

“It’s very gratifying to know that the lands we protect today will be preserved forever,” observed Ernie Averett, President of the Conservancy’s Board of Directors. “We are fortunate to have so many supporters in the community behind our work. It is not possible to preserve land these days without a strong and growing base of friends and contributors.”

The mission of Tar River Land Conservancy is to preserve the natural and cultural resources of the Tar River Basin and surrounding areas by working in partnership with private landowners, public agencies and others to protect rural land, riparian corridors and ensure clean water. Since 2000, Tar River Land Conservancy has protected 16,979 acres across an eight-county region – Edgecombe, Franklin, Granville, Halifax, Nash, Person, Vance, and Warren Counties. For more information about the Conservancy’s work and how to get involved, please visit