Northeastern Minnesota Sharp-Tailed Grouse Habitat Partnership, Phase 2
This Sharp-tailed Grouse Habitat Partnership protected 834 acres, primarily brushland, in Kanabec County for addition to the WMA system, providing multiple environmental benefits.
Working with partners, Pheasants Forever acquired a strategic 960 acre parcel (834 acres paid for with this appropriation and the balance paid from ML 2012 Northeastern Minnesota Sharp-Tailed Grouse Habitat Partnership, Phase III) of land from a willing seller in Kanabec County. This land has been enrolled into the state Wildlife Management Area (WMA) System and will be protected and managed in perpetuity by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR). In addition, the newly acquired WMA will provide public access and recreational opportunities for ALL Minnesotans, so fundamentally important to our outdoor heritage.
The offer to the landowner was based on appraised value and seemed to be competitive with the market at the time. This parcel addressed the loss, degradation and fragmentation of open and brushland habitat within northeastern Minnesota due to natural succession and conversion to other land uses. This has led to a long term decline in the sharp-tailed grouse population and populations of several other wildlife species that use or depend upon these habitats, causing their listing as species of the greatest conservation need. The parcel was identified in conjunction with DNR wildlife professionals and based on criteria in addition to minimum WMA standards that included: habitat restoration potential, landscape scale significance, presence of significant natural communities, future expansion potential, and multiple benefit analysis.
In total, $938,190.75 of Outdoor Heritage Funds were matched with $6,766.00 of non-state funding to complete this work.
$988,000 the first year is to the commissioner of natural resources for an agreement with Pheasants Forever in cooperation with the Minnesota Sharp-Tailed Grouse Society to acquire and enhance lands for wildlife management area purposes under Minnesota Statutes, section 86A.05, subdivision 8. A list of proposed land acquisitions must be provided as part of the required accomplishment plan.
Protect in fee 834 acres of Habitat