MeCC V - Restore & Enhance Significant Habitat (2.5)
$3,375,000 is from the trust fund to the commissioner of natural resources for the fifth appropriation for acceleration of agency programs and cooperative agreements. Of this appropriation, $2,185,000 is for Department of Natural Resources agency programs and $1,190,000 is for agreements as follows: $380,000 with the Trust for Public Land; $90,000 with Friends of the Mississippi River; $155,000 with Great River Greening; $250,000 with Minnesota Land Trust; $225,000 with Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge Trust, Inc.; and $90,000 with Friends of the Minnesota Valley for the purposes of planning, restoring, and protecting important natural areas in the metropolitan area, as defined under Minnesota Statutes, section 473.121, subdivision 2, and portions of the surrounding counties, through grants, contracted services, technical assistance, conservation easements, and fee title acquisition. Land acquired with this appropriation must be sufficiently improved to meet at least minimum management standards as determined by the commissioner of natural resources. Expenditures are limited to the identified project corridor areas as defined in the work program. This appropriation may not be used for the purchase of residential structures, unless expressly approved in the work program. All conservation easements must be perpetual and have a natural resource management plan. Any land acquired in fee title by the commissioner of natural resources with money from this appropriation must be designated as an outdoor recreation unit under Minnesota Statutes, section 86A.07. The commissioner may similarly designate any lands acquired in less than fee title. A list of proposed restorations and fee title and easement acquisitions must be provided as part of the required work program. All funding for conservation easements must include a long-term stewardship plan and funding for monitoring and enforcing the agreement. To the maximum extent practical, consistent with contractual easement or fee acquisition obligations, the recipients shall utilize staff resources to identify future projects and shall maximize the implementation of biodiverse, quality restoration projects in the project proposal into the first half of the 2010 fiscal year.
Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".
Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".
Project Outcome and Results
Great River Greening, along with our volunteers and partners, restored and enhanced a total of 204 acres of habitat with Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund dollars, exceeding our goal of 155 acres, and an additional 140 acres with over $153,000 in leveraged non-state funds. Habitats included prairie, savanna, and forest, including nine native plant communities with biodiversity of statewide significance (as rated by Minnesota County Biological Survey), and habitat for 18 documented rare plant species (1 invertebrate, 2 bird, and 15 plant species). Restorations/enhancements also occurred at sites in priority watersheds rich with rare terrestrial and aquatic rare species, including the St. Croix, Mississippi, and Minnesota; as well as Valley Creek and Eagle Creek trout stream watersheds. A total of 15 different sites were restored/enhanced.
Enhancement of native plant communities with existing significant biodiversity occurred at:
- Arcola Mills Historic Foundation (Stillwater);
- St Croix Valley Early Detection/Rapid Response Garlic Mustard (Taylors Falls and Marine locations);
- Spring Lake Regional Park (Scott Co);
- Spring Lake Park Reserve (Dakota Co);
- Hidden Valley Park (Savage);
- Snail Lake Regional Park (Shoreview);
- St. Croix Savanna SNA (Bayport);
- Lost Valley Prairie SNA (Denmark Township); and
- Pond Dakota Mission (Bloomington).
Restoration/enhancement of habitats in important and strategic locations were:
- prairie/savanna establishment at Pilot Knob Hill (Mendota Heights), located in an area identified by DNR as a top-tier township for habitat for Species of Greatest Conservation Need;
- a large prairie/savanna restoration/enhancement at Belwin Conservancy's Lake Edith site (Afton), in the Valley Creek watershed;
- early detection and control of garlic mustard at a Valley Creek watershed location;
- prairie restoration/enhancement at Central Corridor (Woodbury and Cottage Grove), historically connected to Lost Valley Prairie SNA;
- savanna maintenance at Eagle Creek AMA (Savage), a metro trout stream;/li>;
- floodplain forest enhancement at Heritage Village Park (Inver Grove Heights) to expand on existing significant floodplain forest on the banks of the Mississippi River;
- and a prairie reconstruction burn at OH Anderson Elementary (Mahtomedi), habitat that is also used extensively in classroom studies.
Volunteers contributed over 2500 hours to these habitat projects.
Project Results Use and Dissemination
In January, 2010, Great River Greening included a feature article on the ENRTF, LCCMR, and the Metro Conservation Corridors program and projects in our e-postcard, circulation 3200. A write up on the Metro Conservation Corridors program with features of select projects was included in our Spring 2011 Newsletter, and an article featuring the Pond Dakota Mission restoration was featured in our Fall 2010 newsletter. These are available for continued viewing at http://www.greatrivergreening.org/news.asp. In addition, project descriptions are included in our volunteer recruitment efforts to all the volunteers in our database. In addition, Greening is in active partnership with landowners and other land managers, resulting in a dynamic and timely exchange of information and results.