KECA’s mission is to protect and enhance Pennsylvania’s elk country for future generations. We accomplish that through three priorities; conservation education, habitat enhancement and permanent land protection.
We place our habitat projects into two categories; on-site and off-site. On-site refers to all the habitat work that takes place at the Elk Country Visitor’s Center (ECVC). There are 254 acres that make up the property around the ECVC, but only 80 acres of that is made of up wildlife openings and out of that we are aggressively managing around 35 acres. Some of these openings are managed specifically for attracting elk and other wildlife to our many viewing areas while others are designed to provide forage for elk and other wildlife while also allowing us to harvest the grasses once a year by baling the hay and storing it in our barn. This provides supplemental feeding to our two Belgian Horses, Jake and Donny.
If you are wandering why we have two horses, it’s because we offer covered wagon rides on the property.
Our off-site projects occur both on state owned and private lands. We work with our partners at Pennsylvania’s Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) and the Pennsylvania Game Commission (PGC). They have come to us in the past when they have critical work that needs done on state owned land that they do not have the funds to cover it.
We also work directly with private land owners by enhancing habitat on their land for elk and other wildlife. We currently have 6 projects ongoing with private land owners which includes over 100 acres of herbaceous openings. The state does an excellent job in managing elk and wildlife on state owned land but it becomes more difficult when these wild animals venture onto private ground. KECA fills that niche. We provide needed habitat enhancement on private land all awhile keeping with the state’s management objectives. This ensures consistency across the elk range between and private and state owned land.