Research Natural Areas

The Ancient Cross Timbers Consortium has been organized to promote a wider understanding and the conservation management of uncut old-growth Cross Timbers woodlands on public and private land in Arkansas, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas. We have organized a cooperative network of ancient Cross Timbers sites to serve as research natural areas (RNAs) where non-destructive field research and outdoor educational activities can together help promote a wider appreciation of these interesting remnants of the native woodland and prairie mosaic originally found on the Southern Plains. Through our participating scientists, educators, land managers, and land owners we envision the development and refinement of educational tools and a set of “best management practices” which can help guide those interested in the restoration of ecological integrity to disturbed Cross Timbers landscapes, and to the conservation management of relatively undisturbed old-growth remnants. This map illustrates the locations where we and our collaborators have already initiated long term ecological research (black triangles), and the locations of several additional old growth forest sites in the Cross Timbers and Post Oak Savanna where we hope to organize long term research in the near future (open triangles). The sites with ongoing research are listed below in Table 1 (click the site name to view photographs and further information about the RNA).

Table 1. Research Natural Areas of the Ancient Cross Timbers Consortium.

Cross Timbers State Park Kansas State of Kansas
Devils Backbone Ridge Arkansas State of Arkansas
Tallgrass Prairie Preserve Oklahoma Nature Conservancy
Keystone Ancient Forest Preserve Oklahoma Sand Springs/TNC
McPherson Botanical Reserve Oklahoma OSU
Okmulgee Wildlife Management Area Oklahoma State of Oklahoma
Patton’s Bluff and Tiger Mountain Oklahoma Private
Old Growth Island Oklahoma Federal
Austin College Parcel Texas Austin College
Fossil Hill Texas Private
Bruck Mountain Texas Private
LBJ National Grasslands Texas Federal
Lake Mineral Wells State Park/Ft.Wolters Texas State of Texas
Palo Pinto Wilderness Texas Private