Project #983232 Hankins Lane, Knoxville, TN 37914
Property Type: Habitat
This private property is a beautiful tract located along the banks of the French Broad River that was conserved in 2011 and features about 1,200’ of river frontage. Located within the viewshed of the Great Smoky Mountains, it is also in close proximity to existing protected lands including Seven Islands State Birding Park and Forks of the River Wildlife Management Area. Protection of natural areas like this property is especially important when it comes to supporting critical buffer areas and corridors among these existing wildlife refuges.
The property is about 2/3 wooded with a mix of pine-hardwood forest, but the real jewel of the property is the mosaic of extensive edge and early successional habitat created by numerous interconnected field openings that are managed for native warm-season grasses and forbs. The fields are generally maintained by bush-hogging annually and contain beneficial grasses like Big Bluestem and Yellow Indiangrass as well as pollinator-friendly species like Wild Bergamot, Butterflyweed, Goldenrod, and Ironweed. This mix of native wildflowers yields a stunning display of purples, yellows, and oranges among the grasses in late summer, when they are in full bloom.
Also found on the property is a large 2-acre pond that supports a significant variety of waterfowl and drains via small creek to the river. Other species of birds can also find safe haven here, as the landowner has installed numerous nesting boxes complete with predator guards to deter would-be nest raiders.