NPAT has an exciting opportunity to conserve a vibrant prairie in North Texas. The Paul Mathews Prairie is a rare and pristine 100-acre remnant of the Blackland Prairie near Floyd, TX in Hunt County, not far from the well-known Clymer Meadow. For an incredible price of $50,000, NPAT can become the owner of this unique prairie! We believe this is the chance of a lifetime and one that we should not pass up. NPAT only has a limited time to raise the funds to buy this beautiful prairie. We hope you will help us purchase the prairie, cover the land transaction fees, and create an endowment fund for its stewardship & protection. Those of you familiar with the Deer Park Prairie, will know how expensive it is to maintain a prairie and defend it against pressures such as invasive plants, trees and shrubs, etc. without the traditional tools such as fire and bison. We need to raise $50,000 to cover the entire project.
Although the land is already under conservation easement with The Nature Conservancy (TNC), purchasing the property will ensure that NPAT with its vast prairie expertise will be able to manage the preservation of this extremely rare remnant of what was once a dominant habitat in North American and today is one of the most endangered ecosystems in the world.
Hey, Houston Prairie People: if we could do the Deer Park Prairie (~50 acres for ~$4 million), we should be able to do this easy! People from all over the world helped us save the Deer Park Prairie, let’s return the favor! Please donate and pass the word onto your friends & relatives in the DFW area.
Donate now online at this link or by mail (use this form) to Native Prairies Association of Texas, 415 N. Guadalupe St. PMB 385, San Marcos, TX 78666 (please write Mathews Prairie in the memo line of your check if you want to direct your donation specifically to the Mathews Prairie.)
History of the Mathews prairie: Paul Mathews played in this prairie as a boy in the early 1900s and wanted to preserve it. He finally bought the land in 1969, put it under conservation easement with TNC in the 1980s, and managed it by haying until about 1996. He had received the Lone Star Land Steward award and died at age 101 in 2005. The current owner is Dr. Jim Conrad, a history professor in Commerce, who wants to sell the land and is happy to sell it to NPAT.
Former TNC manager Jim Eidson considers the Mathews Prairie as one of the best representatives of a gamagrass/switchgrass/indiangrass vertisolic (gumbo clay) prairie in Texas. It has very deep gilgai formations.
This prairie has some rare species as well, including a crawfish that was thought to be rare, but now is considered more common than originally thought. Other wildlife information about this prairie can be found at the links below:
- Bees of Paul Mathews Prairie: http://w3.biosci.utexas.edu/jha/wp-content/uploads//Paul-Mathews-Prairie-Nature-Preserve.pdf
- Birding at Paul Mathews Prairie https://www.birdwatchingdaily.com/hotspots/3-paul-mathews-prairie-nature-preserve-hunt-county-texas/
Check out the information about the Paul Mathews Prairie at the NPAT website’s home page: TexasPrairie.org
Photo credits. Top: Jason Singhurst. Bottom: Kirsti Harms.