Home > fyi > nature conservancy highlights: iowa and oregon

nature conservancy highlights: iowa and oregon

A couple of interesting (to me at least) news items from the Nature Conservancy’s Winter 2007 magazine:

20080402_01.jpg Loess Hills

Iowa: Gregg Oden and Lola Lopes recently helped the Conservancy add 160 acres to its Broken Kettle Grassland Preserve with a gift of $450,000 to purchase and manage the new property. Now encompassing 3,221 acres, the preserve shelters the largest contiguous expanse of native prairie in Iowa and offers a rare opportunity to restore a globally threatened landscape. Broken Kettle is part of the Loess Hills, known for its steep grass-covered hills and panoramic views of the Missouri River.

My family’s farm is in these same Loess Hills. If you added some corn and soybean fields along with the pasture grassland and woods in the picture above, it could easily be mistaken for our farm.

20080402_2.jpg Fender’s blue butterfly

Oregon: Landowners Robin and John Jaqua donated nearly $5 million to help the Conservancy purchase a conservation easement that will protect 1,244 acres of native prairie and oak woodland habitat near Eugene, and create an endowment to manage and restore imperiled oak habitats. The result is the Coburg Ridge Preserve, the largest private prairie sanctuary in Oregon’s populous Willamette Valley. The Fender’s blue butterfly was considered extinct until it was recently rediscovered on prairie remnants in the Willamette Valley. The new Coburg Ridge Preserve harbors a strong population of the butterfly.

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