KATY (Covering Katy) – The land conservation organization Katy Prairie Conservancy recently celebrated 25 years of hard work to protect a sustainable portion of the Coastal Prairie.
Mark Klein, owner of Mark Klein Content, hosted the celebration, which was held at the Houston Country Club. Generous contributions will allow KPC to continue to provide adventure, sustain wildlife and ensure healthy communities while protecting precious prairie lands.
Celebrating KPC’s accomplishments over 25 years were philanthropists Graeme and Edgar Marston, John Campbell and Virginia Meyers Seale Watt, who were honored for their role in the organization’s acquisition of important pieces of land that expanded the preserve. The addition of strategic parcels to the preserve system is critical as KPC works to establish and protect the prairie’s long-term resiliency, ensure excellent habitat for wildlife and conserve a place for all to enjoy.
Since its inception in 1992, the Katy Prairie Conservancy has been working to protect a sustainable portion of the prairie and has distinguished itself as a leader in local land protection. The Katy Prairie is an important piece of the much larger Coastal Prairie, which was a vast expanse of tall grasses stretching from the Texas Gulf Coast all the way to Canada that has been reduced to a small fraction of its original size.
KPC now protects more than 20,000 acres in Harris, Waller and Fort Bend counties. KPC’s preserve system is located in the middle of the Central Flyway and is a safe haven for more than 300 resident and migratory bird species; 110 species of mammals, amphibians and reptiles; 600 species of wildflowers and grasses; and thousands of terrestrial insects and aquatic invertebrate species. Restored Showcase Prairies are rich with native grasses and wildflowers and refueling stops for migrating Monarch butterflies. The Katy Prairie has been designated a Global Important Bird Area by the National Audubon Society – one of only 17 sites in Texas – due in large part to the habitat on the prairie that is available to upland species in decline.
KPC supports a vibrant ecosystem that plays an important role in flood control, cleaner air and water, and local food production. Prairie grasses absorb and hold floodwaters back from downstream, native grassland soils store carbon, and wetlands filter water and help improve water quality.
Moving forward, KPC seeks to protect the prairie lands that remain and to connect the people in this region with their prairie heritage on a vast Katy Prairie Preserve. To accomplish this vision, KPC will use direct land acquisition and voluntary partnerships with local landowners, collaborate with other organizations, educate the public through programming and outreach, and support sound land-use decisions through public policy and research.