Boots On The Ground Conservation

Our mission is to protect and restore native grasslands

The Front Page

Student volunteers seeding their special acre.

A HUGE thank you to all who helped pick prairie seed in 2014.  This year's seed crop was planted at Casper Bluff, Horseshoe Mound, and Gateway Park in Jo Daviess County during the first week of November, so now it's up to Mother Nature to do her thing!!

We can't tell you how much all the volunteers that help with prairie seed picking each year are appreciated.  This is a big undertaking  and we could not provide seed for all our plantings if we did not have YOUR help!!  This year we picked 153 different species from various sites around the county. We picked approximately 2600 pounds of seed that will be dispersed over 48 acres.  With your help we planted 14 acres at Gateway Park, over 11 acres at Casper Bluff and provided the seed for the Butterfly Garden at Horseshoe Mound.  It will be fun to see these plantings bloom and grow over the coming years.

NIPE strives to plant prairies with as much local seed as we can.  Most of the seed we collected this year has been in Jo Daviess County since pre-settlement times.  Our prairie seed mixes have great diversity, giving a true sense of what might have been growing when settlers arrived in the area. A diverse planting also gives the new prairie a better chance for success.  Volunteers help make this happen!!

 We hope you have a great winter and look forward to seeing you out on the prairie again next year!!  And once again, THANK YOU!!

North America's Rarest Mammal Bounces Back

The black-footed ferret, North America's rarest mammal, is returning to the western prairie 35 years after being declared extinct.

Grouse Count: Aerial Infrared Technology Ensures Accurate Wildlife Census

The challenge: find a chicken-sized bird in a million-acre expanse characterized by rugged canyons and bad or non-existent roads.

That’s the reality of monitoring greater sage grouse populations throughout much of their range.

A Tale of Two Turkeys

The return of the American wild turkey is either an incredible conservation success or too much of a good thing, depending on who you ask. Photo: © Mark Godfrey

The return of the American wild turkey is either an incredible conservation success or too much of a good thing, depending on who you ask. With Thanksgiving only two weeks away, it’s time to talk turkey.

Actually, two turkeys. And very different ones at that.

Photo of the Week – November 7, 2014

Heading home...

It’s been a busy week, capped off by two days helping staff and volunteers with a bison roundup at The Nature Conservancy’s Niobrara Valley Preserve.