MORE THAN 27,000 RURAL ACRES near Yeehaw Junction in Florida’s southern Osceola County have been gifted to the University of Florida to protect one of the last natural areas of its kind and to serve as a living classroom and laboratory for students and faculty throughout the university, UF officials recently announced. Elisabeth DeLuca’s contribution is among the largest gifts of real estate ever to any university in the nation.
“Few things in this world are as precious — and threatened — as our untamed lands and the wild animals that live there,” DeLuca says. “We need to preserve what we can for the benefit of all of us. These acres are in good hands with the University of Florida, and it pleases me to know that UF will use them to learn more about our natural world and to train new generations of scientists and environmentalists.”
The property — which includes cattle ranchlands, citrus groves, wetlands and forests — is one of the last refuges for the endangered Florida grasshopper sparrow, and hosts many other state and federally listed species such as the Florida panther, gopher tortoise and the red-cockaded woodpecker. The property provides a critical nature corridor between the Kissimmee Prairie Preserve State Park and the Three Lakes Wildlife Management Area. The land is also a conservation focal area for the Everglades Headwaters National Wildlife Refuge and Conservation Area.
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UF/IFAS Professor Leads Effort to Establish Pomegranates in Florida
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SPYKE AND MIKE
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National Infant Immunization Week
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