Governor Ron DeSantis and the Florida Cabinet approved 10 land and conservation easement acquisitions to protect Florida’s natural environment. The properties, totaling more than 17,000 acres, will be managed and monitored by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) or the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS). Seven of the 10 projects, totaling 16,706

Hillsborough County Buys 487 Acres To Expand Wildlife Corridor In South County

Hillsborough County is buying a nearly 500-acre cattle ranch to help create a critical environmental corridor in fast-growing South County.

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. – Hillsborough County is buying a nearly 500-acre cattle ranch to help create a critical environmental corridor in fast-growing South County.

The 487-acre tract connects 9,000 acres of County preservation along the Little Manatee River with about 3,000 acres protected by the state. The land is in southern Wimauma and borders Manatee County.

Acquiring the property brings significant environmental benefits, including allowing the County and state preserves to function as a wildlife corridor. The property will help mitigate the impact of floodwaters, and the pasture areas will be restored to a more natural state.

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The contract allows the landowner to lease back the property for two years while the existing cattle operation is shut down.

The purchase price is $10.2 million and will be made through the County’s Jan K. Platt Environmental Land Acquisition and Protection Program, which is funded through a voter-approved tax.

The County will spend about $1.2 million to restore the property and tear down existing structures on the land.

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