FORESPORT, N.Y. - New York State has purchased 518 acres of land in northern Oneida County which will become the area's newest state forest, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Joe Martens announced on Monday. The acquisition in the Town of Forestport will protect almost one mile of the Black River shoreline, expanding recreation and forest management opportunities on lands in this foothills area outside the Adirondack Park, DEC officials said. "Governor Cuomo and his administration recognize that this acquisition protects undeveloped forest and shoreline adjacent to the Black River, in a location which was the site of a former private trout raising facility," Commissioner Martens said. "Keeping this property as forested land furthers the Black River Valley Corridor priority conservation project identified in the New York State Open Space Conservation Plan. Parcels of forest along the river like this help to facilitate movement of wildlife and plant species between the Adirondacks and Tug Hill for a variety of reasons including genetic exchange within a species and biodiversity." The state paid $385,400 for the land, which came from the Environmental Protection Fund. The property will be its own named state forest, as it is not adjacent to other state forests and will remain on local property tax rolls. The property is characterized by shady ravines with several springs that run year round, northern hardwood and coniferous forests, bogs with rare plants like pitcher plants and forested wetlands. The area is adjacent to conservation easement lands that protect the Town of Forestport water wells and will provide added protection for the Town's water supply. This is the second land purchase from Dominic and Edna Carbone of Forestport which continues the protection of the Black River Valley Corridor. In March of 2008, New York State purchased 1,840 acres of conservation easement lands also along the Black River in the towns of Boonville and Forestport. These lands are adjacent to existing state forest lands and a portion of the easement adjacent to the Black River provides opportunities for recreation, like hunting and fishing, while protecting the wild character of the river corridor. Robert Seager, resident of Forestport and representing Oneida County on the Open Space Advisory Committee, said: "This is a good purchase that protects the unique springs and wetlands and provides for public recreation on the property. This land protection also aligns with the local comprehensive plan for protecting the rural character and integrity of the town." "We applaud New York State and the Carbone family for expanding the protected lands within a critical wildlife linkage area between the Adirondacks and the Tug Hill Plateau," said Michael Carr, Executive Director of The Nature Conservancy's Adirondack Chapter. "This important acquisition conserves forests and waters while also demonstrating how conservation and community values can overlap."