LAURENS COUNTY, SC (Sep. 8, 2021) — The Open Space Institute (OSI) and the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR) today announced the addition of five properties, totaling 1,841 acres, to South Carolina’s Belfast Wildlife Management Area (WMA). Transfer of the lands will increase the size of the WMA by more than a third, while protecting important streams and wetlands and creating new recreational hunting opportunities in the South Carolina Piedmont.
The five properties, together called the “Belfast Extension” properties, are contiguous to each other and feature eight ponds and lakes, upland forests and wetlands, prairie fields, wetlands, and pristine streams. Teeming with native wildlife, the properties’ addition to the 4,664-acre Belfast WMA increases publicly available hunting land in the Saluda River Basin.
Together, the Belfast properties are easily accessible from the Columbia, Greenville, and Spartanburg metro areas.
“This important conservation project will greatly enhance hunting and recreation opportunities for residents of Laurens and Newberry counties, the greater Piedmont, and beyond,” said Nate Berry, OSI’s senior vice president in South Carolina. “We thank the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources, the South Carolina Department of Transportation, and the South Carolina Conservation Bank for their tireless efforts to protect our state's unparalleled natural resources for future generations.”