Natural Resources Unit

Linn County Conservation receives Wildlife Habitat Improvement Award

Posted:9/24/2018 Linn

The Linn County Conservation Board received the Izaak Walton League's County Conservation Wildlife Habitat Improvement Award- Third Place for large county at the Iowa Association of County Conservation Boards Annual Fall Conference in Des Moines.  This is the second year in a row Linn County has been recognized after taking ​First Place for 2017.

The Awards go to the County Conservation Boards judged to have carried out the most outstanding program of wildlife habitat improvement through promotion, planning, planting, and maintenance. Scoring criteria includes cover improvements, which can provide both protective and nesting cover as well as the diversity of habitat.  “Our efforts this past year included planting over 118 acres of pollinator habitat with our local partnership with the Monarch Research Project,” said Linn County Conservation Natural Resources Manager Dana Kellogg.  In addition, nearly 282 acres of prairie were mowed or burned.  Kellogg says burning “helps rejuvenate prairies by removing the excess leaf litter and allows more plants to flower, produce, seed, and grow taller.”  Along with planting numerous new trees within the county park system, Linn County Conservation partners with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and Alliant Energy for the Operation Releaf residential tree distribution program.  Linn County Conservation was also recognized for providing public programs on wildlife habitat improvement techniques, developing riparian buffer strips or stream bank stabilization projects to improve water quality and fish habitat, and being part of a county that administers a roadside vegetation management program.

While many of these habitat improvement efforts are continuous, new projects for the near future include additional wetland development and enhancements at Wickiup Hill Learning Area, Buffalo Creek Natural Area, and the Matsell Bridge Natural Area.

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Pictured:

Andrew Huck, Ecologist

Dana Kellogg, Natural Resources Manager

Tony Nemmers, Natural Resources Specialist

Missing is Josh Volz, Natural Resoucres Technician, and Doug Kuehl, who retired earlier this year.