The Southern Oregon Land Conservancy has announced a new conservation agreement that protects 160 acres in the Colestin Valley, south of Ashland.

According to SOLC, the property is located along "one of the most important wildlife corridors in Oregon and northern California." The site includes oak woodlands, evergreen forest, chaparral and meadows and a number of protected wildlife and plants.

“We are honored to work with visionary landowners who appreciate the conservation values of their special places," said Cathy Dombi, SOLC executive director, in a press release. "Good habitats make great neighbors. All of us in Southern Oregon and beyond benefit when we come together to keep wild lands wild. Oregon has a proud tradition of celebrating the natural wonders of our amazing state.”

The agreement adds to the 2,035 acres of already protected lands in the Colestin Valley.

Over the course of two years, SOLC worked together with the landowners, Stan Dean and Katharine Bronwen, to develop a conservation easement.

The voluntary conservation agreement ensures that the 160 acres will continue to provide a habitat for wildlife. The land will stay in private ownership, the landowners can continue to live on the property and the property may be sold with the protections intact.

The Southern Oregon Land Conservancy was founded in 1978 as Oregon’s first regional land trust. SOLC works with landowners to save and restore rural and wild sites, including working farms and ranches, forests, relatively undisturbed and diverse habitats, and lands with unique features, such as rivers or scenic views.

For more information about SOLC, see www.landconserve.org or call 541-482-3069.