Lone Star Land Steward: Big Woods



This is Passport to Texas

In 1995, Dr. Robert McFarlane bought 1,500 acres 90 miles southeast of Dallas along the Trinity River near where he hunted and fished as a kid. Since then he has
pieced together an additional 6,000 acres of river bottom, open marsh wetlands and upland hardwoods, which he named Big Woods.

08- I try to keep the Big Woods true to what I see as the laws of nature. It’s a place where you can go and be in the wild and see the animals and just be.

When Dr. McFarlane acquired the property, it was highly-fragmented and over-grazed. During the last 20 years, he’s walked the land daily, and worked tirelessly to improve aquatic and terrestrial resources.

07- We have 40 to 45 marshes, and over a hundred miles of roads. We plant about 50 food plots.

Dr. McFarlan’s effort to restore this area of the Trinity River is representative of what it means to be a good steward of the land, which may be why he won the 2015 Lone Star Land Steward Leopold Award.

15- When I started buying all this land, and I sold what stocks I owned, my friends thought I was crazy. And they were correct. I think this was a form of insanity, but I think it was a beautiful insanity, and I’m happy to have been crazy.

Learn more about the Lone Star Land Steward program and Dr. McFarlane’s contribution to habitat on the Texas Parks and Wildlife website.

The Wildlife Restoration Program supports our series.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife, I’m Cecilia Nasti.

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