Joseph W. Jones Ecological Research Center at Ichauway
The southeast border of Ichauway, located in Baker County, is formed by thirteen miles of the Flint River. Ichauway protects some of the richest species diversity of the southeastern coastal plain, with resources that include approximately 17,000 acres of mature longleaf pine woodlands, innumerable depression wetlands, 25 miles of streams, and 5,000 acres of old-field habitat.
Woodruff Foundation officials researched options for the best use of Ichauway following Woodruff's death in 1985. They developed the center's future goals after reviewing a comprehensive ecological inventory of the property. The center was named in honor of Joseph W. Jones, who was Woodruff's longtime associate, a senior vice president of the Coca-Cola Company, and chairman emeritus of the Woodruff Foundation. By 1993 core staff members were hired in research, forest and wildlife management, and administrative support. In 1996 the staff moved into a newly constructed campus, where as of 2006 more than 100 employees and 25 graduate and undergraduate students from regional universities work on-site.
Research at the Jones Center investigates questions relating to the restoration and the conservation management, including prescribed burning, of longleaf pine ecosystems; conservation biology of rare species; and the development of economic opportunities through the integration
The Ichauway site is used by the Jones Center as both an outdoor laboratory for research, conservation, and restoration of regional ecosystems, and as an educational demonstration site for ecology and natural resource management. Landowners, land managers, natural resource policy makers, conservation groups, and affiliated university classes are prioritized outreach constituents. Regional schoolteacher activities are conducted annually. Field demonstrations and workshops often relate to prescribed fire, longleaf pine forest ecology and sustainable management, ecological restoration of threatened ecosystems and wildlife habitat, traditional quail habitat management, threatened and endangered plants and wildlife, wetland protection and management, watershed conservation, and the importance of water resources and aquatic ecosystems in southwest Georgia.
The Fire Forest: Longleaf Pine-Wiregrass Ecosystem (Conyers, Ga.: Georgia Wildlife Press, 2001).
Georgia Wildlife Federation, The Flint River, vol. 9, Georgia Wildlife (Conyers, Ga.: Georgia Wildlife Federation, 2002).
Lindsay R. Boring, J. W. Jones Ecological Research Center at Ichauway
A project of the Georgia Humanities Council, in partnership with the University of Georgia Press, the University System of Georgia/GALILEO, and the Office of the Governor.