Scientific and Natural Areas Acquisition and Restoration

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2012 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$820,000
2013 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$820,000
Fund Source
Environment & Natural Resources Trust Fund
Recipient
MN DNR
Recipient Type
State Government
Status
Completed
Start Date
July 2011
End Date
June 2014
Activity Type
Digitization/Online Information Access
Education/Outreach/Engagement
Inventory
Land Acquisition
Monitoring
Planning
Restoration/Enhancement
Technical Assistance
Counties Affected
Statewide
Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2011, First Special Session, Chp. 2, Art.3, Sec. 2, Subd. 04e
Appropriation Language

$820,000 the first year and $820,000 the second year are from the trust fund to the commissioner of natural resources to acquire lands with high-quality native plant communities and rare features to be established as scientific and natural areas as provided in Minnesota Statutes, section 86A.05, subdivision 5, restore parts of scientific and natural areas, and provide technical assistance and outreach. A list of proposed acquisitions must be provided as part of the required work program. Land acquired with this appropriation must be sufficiently improved to meet at least minimum management standards, as determined by the commissioner of natural resources. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2014, by which time the project must be completed and final products delivered.

2012 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$820,000
Direct expenses
$820,000
Number of full time equivalents funded
17.47
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2011, First Special Session, Chp. 2, Art.3, Sec. 2, Subd. 04e
Appropriation Language

$820,000 the first year and $820,000 the second year are from the trust fund to the commissioner of natural resources to acquire lands with high-quality native plant communities and rare features to be established as scientific and natural areas as provided in Minnesota Statutes, section 86A.05, subdivision 5, restore parts of scientific and natural areas, and provide technical assistance and outreach. A list of proposed acquisitions must be provided as part of the required work program. Land acquired with this appropriation must be sufficiently improved to meet at least minimum management standards, as determined by the commissioner of natural resources. This appropriation is available until June 30, 2014, by which time the project must be completed and final products delivered.

2013 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
$820,000
Direct expenses
$820,000
Number of full time equivalents funded
17.47
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Measurable Outcome(s)

Click on "Final Report" under "Project Details".

Project Overview


PROJECT OVERVIEW
Minnesota's Scientific and Natural Areas (SNA) Program is an effort to preserve and perpetuate the state's ecological diversity and ensure that no single rare feature is lost from any region of the state. This includes landforms, fossil remains, plant and animal communities, rare and endangered species, and other unique biotic or geological features. These sites play an important role in scientific study, public education, and outdoor recreation. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is using this appropriation to conduct restoration activities on approximately 1,800 acres in existing SNAs, to acquire an additional 80 acres to be added to the SNA system, and to increase citizen and student knowledge and skills pertaining to ecological restoration and biodiversity conservation through engagement with SNAs.

OVERALL PROJECT OUTCOME AND RESULTS
The biologically significant 900-acre Badoura Jack Pine Forest SNA was acquired in part through appropriation. Twenty-two conservation easement baseline property reports at 11 SNAs are completed. The SNA Strategic Land Protection Plan has been completed which prioritizes places of ecological importance for protection as SNAs and by partners.

Habitat restoration and enhancement actions are increasing the quality of habitat on SNAs through achieving: restoration of about 30 acres at 4 SNAs; woody invasive species control on 610 acres at 19 SNAs, herbaceous invasive species treatment on 487 acres at 33 SNAs, and installation of invasives control bootbrush kiosks at 6 SNAs; about 36 miles of burn breaks at 21 SNAs and completion of 1,190 acres of prescribed burns at 25 SNAs; and site development work (e.g. entry and boundary signs, new gates, and site cleanup) at 35 SNAs. Conservation Corps Minnesota was involved in 51 of these projects. Substantial monitoring was completed of pollinators at 10 SNAs, of snakes at 1 SNA, and of native plant communities at 2 SNAs.

The public's and youth involvement in SNAs and their knowledge and skills about biodiversity conservation has significantly increased through the SNA Outreach Initiative started through this appropriation. About 188 SNA events were held with 2,745 participants and 124 volunteer site stewards have committed to help care for SNAs. A broad range of communications tools have engaged people in sharing information about SNAs. Electronic communications achievements include: a new quarterly electronic newsletter with over 2600 subscribers and a significantly improved new SNA webpage. Print communications created and distributed include: a statewide map with location and directions to SNAs, a new North Shore SNA guide, 3 series of pocket cards, and site-specific factsheets.

PROJECT RESULTS USE AND DISSEMINATION
Dissemination is primarily achieved through the upgraded SNA webpage on the DNR website: http://www.mndnr.gov/snas. The SNA Strategic Land Protection Plan is also disseminated through this website: http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/eco/sna/plan.html. All volunteer events are listed at the webpage. Volunteer site stewards submit periodic reports via a generic SNA email address sna.dnr@state.mn.us created through this appropriation for a broad variety of constituent communications. Through this appropriation, the quarterly electronic Nature Notes newsletter was initiated and 8 of 10 issues were emailed through govdelivery - with over 2600 current subscribers.

A statewide color map locating all SNAs (with directions to all sites and ENRTF acknowledgement on the back) has been designed, 5000 copies printed, and nearly all copies distributed through the DNR Information Center, at DNR region and area offices and state parks, at the State Fair, and through SNA event co-sponsors - with primary emphasis on facilities/organizations that are near SNAs and are cooperating on sponsoring SNA events. A color poster-booklet on "The Ten Best Places of the North Shore: A Visitor's Guide to North Shore Scientific and Natural Areas" was printed and distributed through a combination of this appropriation and federal Coastal Zone Management funding. Each year series of new business card-size "pocket cards" each featuring 1 SNA (and incorporating a QR code through which a smart phone with camera can directly connect to the SNA web) have been printed and almost all cards for the 32 SNAs produced to date have been distributed through the State Fair, DNR Info Center, and many DNR events.

Project Details
Project Manager
First Name
Peggy
Last Name
Booth
Organization Name
MN DNR
Street Address
500 Lafayette Rd, Box 25
City
St Paul
State
MN
Zip Code
55155
Phone
(651) 259-5088
Email
peggy.booth@state.mn.us