Wildlife Management Area
The Wildlife Management Area plan was established with a goal of maximizing aesthetic values detailing recommended management practices. The Homeowner’s Association manages the Wildlife Management Area program through its Stewardship Committee. The Association’s goal is to protect wildlife and their habitat for the entire area. Preparation and maintenance of an active meaningful wildlife and habitat management plan is the primary aim of the Association. Individual property owners may opt out of the management area and file their own wildlife plan or file for an agriculture exemption. (Blanco County requires a minimum of 12.5 acres to file for an agriculture or wildlife exemption.) If you do not file for either exemption, or your use of the tract you buy (after closing) results in the assessment of additional taxes, penalties and interest for period’s prior to closing, such additional assessments will be your obligation.
Even though the entire subdivision has a Wildlife Management Area plan that maintains Wildlife Valuation through the Homeowner’s Association, each new owner who elects to be part of the overall Wildlife Management plan must have an individual plan and applications prepared and filed for each tract purchased. There is an initiation fee of $600 for membership of future land-owners to participate in the Wildlife Management Area program. This fee provides for the prepa-ration of an individual Wildlife Management Area plan tailored to meet your individual desires and appropriate appraisal district applications. The fee is due at closing.
Your plan will be prepared so the land will be used to generate a sustaining breeding, migrating, or wintering population of indigenous wild animals. There are seven listed Wildlife Management Area activities you must perform on your land. To qualify you must elect to engage in three or more of seven approved activities. The seven activities are:
- Habitat Control (Habitat Management). A wild animal’s habitat is its surroundings as a whole, including plants, ground cover, shelter and other animals on the land. Habi-tat control means actively using the land to create or promote an environment that is beneficial to wildlife on the land.
- Erosion Control. Any active practice that attempts to reduce deep soil erosion to a minimum for the benefit of wildlife is erosion control. Some erosion control practices in-clude pond construction, gully shaping, streamside, pond and wetland revegetation, and establishing native plants.
- Predator Control (Predator Management). This term means practices intended to manage the population of predators to benefit the owner’s target wildlife population. Some types of predator management are to control fire ants.
- Providing Supplemental Supplies of Water. Natural water exists in all wildlife envi-ronments. Supplemental water is provided when the owner actively provides water in addition to the natural sources. Some examples of recommended practices include man-aging well, trough and windmill overflow.
- Providing Supplemental Supplies of Food. Most wildlife environments have some natural food. An owner supplies supplemental food by providing food or nutrition in addi-tion to the level naturally produced on the land such as food plots, feeder and mineral supplements.
- Providing Shelter. This term means actively creating or maintaining vegetation or arti-ficial structures that provide shelter from the weather, nesting and breeding sites or “escape cover” from enemies. This includes such items as installing nest boxes and bat boxes, managing fence lines and establishing woody plants and shrubs.
- Making Census Counts to Determine Population. Census counts are periodic sur-veys and inventories to determine the number, composition or other relevant information about a wildlife population to ensure if the current wildlife management practices are serving the targeted species. The survey techniques are spotlight counting, aerial counts and daylight wildlife composition counts.