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ARGYLE — The Grassland Bird Trust, formerly the Friends of the Washington County Grasslands Important Bird Area, closed on 64 acres of Argyle land, according to a news release.

The acreage includes grassland habitat for multiple bird species including the state endangered short-eared owl. The land is near the Alfred Z. Solomon Grassland Bird Viewing Area on county Route 42 in Fort Edward and expands the conserved lands in that area to 78 acres.

The state awarded the nonprofit organization $63,191 through the Regional Economic Development Council awards at the end of last year. That funding, combined with $50,000 from the Open Space Institute and member donations helped purchase the land.

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State Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos, in news release, said he commends the Grassland Bird Trust’s dedication to conservation of New York’s wildlife heritage.

Acting State Parks Commissioner Erik Kulleseid agreed.

“Washington County Grasslands is a wonderful place for people to explore the incredible diversity of plants and birds in our state,” Kulleseid said. “I applaud the Grassland Bird Trust for their successful acquisition, which will further preserve this critical natural habitat and restore threatened grassland bird populations.”

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