National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and The Orton Foundation Partner to Restore Longleaf Pine Habitat

New partnership to improve longleaf habitat in eastern North Carolina through plantings, prescribed burning

Washington, D.C. (May 2, 2017) – The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) and Louis Bacon's Orton Foundation, an affiliate of The Moore Charitable Foundation, today announced a new partnership that will restore and enhance the longleaf pine ecosystem in eastern North Carolina. The Orton Foundation’s commitment underscores the central role that North Carolina must play in order to successfully restore longleaf pine habitat across the southeast. This partnership will build upon the exceptional work already underway using prescribed burning to improve forest health.

The Orton Foundation’s grant of $300,000 will support projects through the Longleaf Stewardship Fund, a public-private partnership managed by NFWF that provides strategic grants to expand, enhance and accelerate longleaf pine ecosystem restoration across its historical range. These funds will be combined with additional funding from NFWF and its partners through the 2017 Longleaf Stewardship Fund grant cycle for work in eastern North Carolina. 


Photo 1: The Orton Foundation is committed to longleaf pine restoration in North Carolina by supporting best practices in forest health management, such as the application of prescribed burning. | Credit: Angie Carl, The Nature Conservancy North Carolina
Photo 2: The Red-cockaded Woodpecker’s habitat –longleaf pines in the Southeast—was once shaped by the region’s frequent lightning fires. The species was listed as Endangered in 1970 after drastic decline of original habitat. | Credit: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Priorities will include planting longleaf pine in areas chosen for restoration through science-based planning and enhancing existing longleaf forest habitat with prescribed burning. Other activities will include thinning and invasive species removal.

Best management practices will benefit longleaf pine-associated wildlife. Public outreach and education efforts will highlight the importance of prescribed burning for restoring and maintaining healthy longleaf pine ecosystems.

“We applaud NFWF in their efforts to restore the iconic and critically threatened longleaf pine,” said Louis Bacon, Founder and Chairman of The Moore Charitable Foundation. “We are confident that this partnership will revitalize longleaf habitat and the wildlife that rely upon it.”


Louis Bacon, Founder and Chairman of The Moore Charitable Foundation

"We are excited to partner with The Orton Foundation to advance longleaf pine ecosystem restoration in eastern North Carolina," said Jeff Trandahl, executive director and CEO of NFWF. "Their commitment will help accelerate longleaf pine restoration through plantings and the application of prescribed fire, which will benefit a wide array of wildlife and plants, including rare species such as the red-cockaded woodpecker, Carolina gopher frog and Venus fly trap."

For more information about the Longleaf Stewardship Fund, please visit

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About National Fish and Wildlife Foundation
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) protects and restores our nation’s wildlife and habitats. Chartered by Congress in 1984, NFWF directs public conservation dollars to the most pressing environmental needs and matches those investments with private contributions. NFWF works with government, nonprofit and corporate partners to find solutions for the most intractable conservation challenges. Over the last three decades, NFWF has funded more than 4,500 organizations and committed more than $3.8 billion to conservation projects. Learn more at

About Louis Bacon and The Orton Foundation
Louis Bacon is a conservation philanthropist who has spent more than two decades supporting efforts to protect natural resources in the United States and abroad. Mr. Bacon is the Founder and Chairman of The Moore Charitable Foundation and its affiliate foundations including North Carolina affiliate The Orton Foundation.

The Orton Foundation focuses on protecting the Cape Fear River Basin’s unique wetlands, lands, forest and wildlife habitats. The Orton Foundation also supports educational, health care and community programs in the region.




Rob Blumenthal, 202-857-0166


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