Anoka Sand Plain Habitat Conservation - Phase IV
The Anoka Sandplain Partnership (Phase 4) proposal will restore and enhance 917 acres of wildlife habitat on priority public lands principally within the Anoka Sandplain Ecological Region within the Metropolitan Urbanizing and Forest-Prairie Transition sections.
The Anoka Sandplain Partnership includes >23 government agencies/organizations working to protect, enhance and restore the lands and waters of the ecoregion. We put forward an ambitious fourth proposal to accelerate protection and enhancement of important wildlife habitat.
The following outcomes will be realized:
1. Expansion of ongoing restoration/enhancement to 12 new project areas. Sites include: 2 state WMAs, 1 State Forest, 2 SNAs; 1 national wildlife refuge; and 4 local/county/regional protected lands; additionally, 2 projects will address enhancement needs associated with the Wild and Scenic Rum River, including shoreline and wild rice within the watershed.
2. Restoration/enhancement of 917 acres (and 1.2 miles of shoreline) of habitat across priority lands and waters, including what will become a substantial pollinator restoration project.
3. Engagement of local communities as appropriate in the implementation of project activities.
Proposed Project Areas by Partner:
1. Anoka Conservation District
• Boot Lake SNA (Anoka County) – Part of a chain of ice-block lakes, this SNA contains MCBS-quality habitats ranging from oak forest and old white pine stands to wooded bogs/wet meadows. Actions: Enhance 20 acres of tamarack swamp through glossy buckthorn treatment.
• Kern Conservation Easement (Anoka County) – The 55-acre property lies within a habitat corridor along Ford Brook, a tributary of the Rum River, and is protected by a conservation easement. Actions: Enhance 33 acres of wetland, riparian buffer and prairie through plantings, seeding, and prescribed burns.
• Revetments on the Rum (Anoka County) – The Rum River is one of six state-designated wild and scenic rivers, but is impacted by bank erosion from wave action and natural forces. Actions: Enhance 1000 feet of riparian and instream habitat through installation of cost-effective and ecologically-sensitive cedar revetments and willow staking.
2. Great River Greening
• Sand Dunes State Forest, Phase 2 (Sherburne County) – The SDSF Operational Plan (2013) identifies 630 acres of the 5,700-acre forest for immediate action to address imperiled native plant communities and rare species. Actions: Enhancement of 98 acres of priority habitat through pine removal, and invasive species control.
• Sherburne NWR, Phase 4 (Sherburne County) – This 30,700-acre refuge protects migratory birds and other wildlife, with a focus on oak savanna, wetlands and Big Woods habitat. This phase will initiate a substantial pollinator restoration project. Actions: Enhancement of 350 acres of partially restored prairie habitat by interseeding a diverse native seed mixture to bring site to state pollinator restoration guidelines.
• Bridgeview Park Reserve (Sherburne County) – This 31-acre county park lies along the Mississippi River and protects a MCBS-quality example of oak savanna. Actions: Enhancement of 31 acres of oak savanna through woody invasive species control and prescribed fire.
• Uncas Dunes SNA (Sherburne County) – This 745-acre SNA is preserved for its relict dunefield, oak savanna, oak forest, and wetland habitats, and rare species including the Uncas skipper. Actions: Enhancement of 12 acres of oak savanna habitat through invasive species control.
• Talahi Woods (Stearns County) – This 23-acre natural area lies along the Mississippi River and is part of a large habitat corridor along the river; the site is owned by St. Cloud State University and protects an oak savanna remnant and is used as an outdoor classroom. Actions: Enhancement of 23 acres of oak savanna through woody invasive species control, seeding and planting.
• Wild Rice Restoration, Phase 2 (Isanti, Sherburne, Kennebec, Mille Lacs & Anoka Counties) – Nowhere is wild rice as important as in Minnesota, and the Rum River watershed was near the center of its range. Actions: Enhancement of 150 acres of public wetlands/rivers within the Anoka Sandplain, primarily within the Rum River watershed, through wild rice seeding and associated habitat management activities.
3. Isanti County Parks
• Becklin Homestead Wildlife Management Area and County Park (Isanti County) – This jointly-managed 294-acre park/WMA located along the Rum River consisting of prairies, woodlands, and savannas is dedicated for hunting use for the physically challenged. Actions: Restoration of 7 acres of pollinator habitat through site preparation, seeding, and continued management.
4. National Wild Turkey Federation
• Buckhorn Lake WMA (Todd County) – This 157-acre WMA consists of rolling hills of oak woodland and grasslands along Buckhorn Lake. Actions: Enhancement of 82 acres of oak woodland through woody invasive species control and fire break installation in preparation for prescribed fire.
• Sponsa WMA (Morrison County) – This 222-acre WMA contains rolling grasslands and oak-popple woodlands on Coon Lake. Actions: Enhancement of 110 acres of forest through woody invasive species control and fire break installation in preparation for prescribed fire.
$1,208,000 the second year is to the commissioner of natural resources for agreements to restore and enhance wildlife habitat on public lands in Anoka, Isanti, Morrison, Sherburne, and Todd Counties as follows: $93,000 to Anoka Conservation District; $25,000 to Isanti County Parks and Recreation Department; $813,000 to Great River Greening; and $277,000 to the National Wild Turkey Federation. A list of proposed land restorations and enhancements must be provided as part of the required accomplishment plan.
Wetland and upland complexes will consist of native prairies, restored prairies, quality grasslands, and restored shallow lakes and wetlands - Using and updating existing plans, partners collaborate to target priority lands for protection, restoration and enhancement activities. This work builds upon prior phases and expands the impact of our work. Ongoing assessment by partners will document change in habitat condition and expansion of priority habitat, and associated species. .Core areas protected with highly biologically diverse wetlands and plant communities, including native prairie, Big Woods, and oak savanna - Using and updating existing plans, partners collaborate to target priority lands for protection, restoration and enhancement activities. This work builds upon prior phases and expands the impact of our work. Ongoing assessment by partners will document change in habitat condition and expansion of priority habitat, and associated species. .
NWTF, Greening, Sherburne County, Greening, Greening, NWTF, Greening, Sherburne County, Anoka SWCD, Isanti County Parks, Anoka SWCD, Anoka SWCD, Anoka SWCD, Anoka SWCD, Anoka SWCD, LandownerGreening, Landowner