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Louise Keir Wildlife Management Area

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Trees in the Louise Keir WMA

Louise Keir Wildlife Management Area (WMA) The primary purposes of the Louise Keir (WMA) are for wildlife management, wildlife habitat management, and wildlife-dependent recreation. This WMA consists of about 187 acres in southern Albany County. While much of the area was historically cleared and farmed in the early 1900's, it has since reverted back to forestland. The initial parcel was donated to the State as a gift in 1978, and additional parcels were purchased in 2004 and 2006. There are two primary forest types on the Louise Keir WMA. Almost the entire northern half is a relatively young oak forest, while most of the south facing hillside is mixed northern hardwood-conifer forest. White pines are the predominant species here, invading the area when the farming ceased and the fields were allowed to re-vegetate naturally. The upper elevations of the property, which reach over 1,000 feet, contain one uncommon natural community: a pitch pine-oak-heath rocky summit. This is a fire-dependent community. Because no fires have occurred in this area for many decades, the pitch pine is being lost and shaded out by the white pine.

Featured Activities

Hunting and Trapping
Louise Keir Wildlife Management Area is located in Wildlife Management Unit 4B. This WMA provides opportunities for hunting big game such as white-tailed deer, and more rarely black bear. Wild turkey and gray squirrel provide the most small game hunting opportunity. Trappers can expect to find coyote and other furbearers such as fox, raccoon, fisher and an occasional bobcat. (View hunting seasons and trapping seasons)

Wildlife Viewing
Deer, turkeys, black bears, squirrels, and a host of songbirds frequent the area. Use the Wildlife Management Area Mammal Checklist (PDF) (85KB) and the Wildlife Management Area Bird Checklist (PDF) (240 KB) as a wildlife viewing guides.

Louise Keir Brown Sign

Directions

Designated parking areas providing access can be found on County Route 103 (Blodgett Hill Road)

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Rules, Regulations and Outdoor Safety

Activity Rules & Regulations

The following activities are not permitted in Louise Keir WMA:

  • Using motorized vehicles, including:
    • all-terrain vehicles and dirt bikes
    • snowmobiles
    • motorboats
  • Swimming or bathing
  • Camping
  • Kindling fires
  • Damaging or removing gates, fences, signs or other property
  • Overnight storage of boats
  • Cutting, removing or damaging living vegetation
  • Construction of permanent blinds or other structures such as tree stands
  • Littering
  • Damaging or removing gates, fences, signs or other property.
  • Storage of personal property

Outdoor Safety Tips

NOTE: Ticks are active whenever temperatures are above freezing but especially so in the late spring and early fall. Deer ticks can transmit Lyme and several other diseases. More information on deer ticks and Lyme disease can be obtained from the NYS Department of Health (Leaves DEC's Website). Also, practice Leave No Trace (Leaves DEC's website) principles when recreating on state land to enjoy the outdoors responsibly; minimize impact on the natural resources and avoid conflicts.

How We Manage

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Like most of the state's Wildlife Management Areas, Louise Keir WMA is managed by DEC's Division of Fish and Wildlife for wildlife conservation and wildlife-associated recreation (hunting, trapping, wildlife viewing/photography). Funding to maintain and manage this site is provided by the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration or "Pittman-Robertson" Act, which is acquired through excise taxes on sporting arms, ammunition and archery equipment.

The primary management objective for the area is to maintain the present forest character, and to maintain the presence of the pitch pine-oak-heath rocky summit community. A commercial timber harvest occurred on portions of the WMA in 2007. White pines were thinned to improve stand health and establish diversity in stand age and diversity. This also created openings in the forest canopy and released pitch pines from shading. Additional timber harvests are likely to occur in the future in order to create and maintain young forest habitat. This will benefit a wide variety of species, including deer, turkey and grouse.

Tourism Information for Nearby Attractions, Amenities & Activities

Numerous guide books and maps are available with information on the lands, waters, trails and other recreational facilities in this area. These can be purchased at most outdoor equipment retailers, bookstores, and on-line booksellers.

Web links below can provide information about other recreation, attractions and amenities in this area.