JK Moving has partnered with the Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy to protect an 87-acre parcel of land in northern Loudoun County, near Lucketts. The property has more native species of plant and wildlife indigenous to Loudoun and Virginia than is typical, and JK purchased it in 2018 with the intent to place it into conservation easement to protect from development in perpetuity. The Land Trust of Virginia, based in Middleburg, executed the easement for the property, which will be known as JK Wildlife Sanctuary.
JK Moving President and CEO Chuck Kuhn plans to sell the property to the Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy (LWC) when it raises the necessary funds. It will be sold at the lower “conserved” property value, and JK Moving and the Kuhn Family Foundation will donate the remaining balance. The easement was done in anticipation of LWC acquiring the property by the end of this year.
The JK Wildlife Sanctuary provides an important wildlife habitat for a number of aquatic and terrestrial species, with potential habitat for two State Threatened Species – the Wood Turtle and the Loggerhead Shrike, according to LWC officials. The Sanctuary consists of 54 acres of forest cover, 10.7 acres of minor floodplain, and 13 important vernal pools, according to officials with the Land Trust of Virginia and LWC.
“It is an exceptional and unique habitat” said LWC Executive Director Michael Myers. “That’s why we are working hard to protect it for future generations.”
LWC plans to hold the property in its natural state and conduct occasional field trips and citizen science monitoring just as it does at both the Dulles Wetlands Mitigation Project and at Gum Farm. In addition, it plans to create a small set of walking trails to enable restricted and guided public access and to use this as the first of several Loudoun Wildlife sanctuaries of significant habitats preserved across the county.
According to Land Trust of Virginia officials, the property lies within the Mosby Heritage Area as well as The Journey Through Hallowed Ground, further protecting land important to the cultural and historic qualities of Loudoun.
“As a company headquartered here, we know how special Loudoun County is. Protecting this property furthers our interest in making meaningful charitable investments and protecting open spaces,” said Kuhn. “While this property could have been divided into many parcels, we are thrilled to reduce that to zero and conserve this critical habitat.”