Working with Landowners to Restore and Protect Grassland Habitat
If it's been a while since you’ve seen a Greater Prairie Chicken...you’re not alone. Today, the birds are listed as Endangered within the state of Missouri, where fewer than 500 of them remain. Greater Prairie Chickens, as well as several other wildlife species, call the Missouri grasslands home—and these grasslands are a precious but dwindling resource. With a Toyota TogetherGreen Innovation Grant of $58,000 and over $100,000 in matching funds, Audubon Missouri, the Missouri Department of Conservation, City of Cole Camp, the Hi Lonesome Master Naturalists and the National Wild Turkey Federation banded together in a unique partnership to help and encourage private landowners to restore important grassland habitat.
Through a series of dialogues, workshops, trainings, and demonstration projects, the Grassland Recovery Project helped inspire landowners to make informed choices on their property to benefit grassland species. And, to further build support for these restoration efforts, project partners provided educational information at community events in the area.
The results of the Grassland Recovery Project have been twofold: wildlife benefit from the increased the amount of well-managed grassland habitat. In turn, wildlife- and nature-lovers are attracted to the area, creating a unique state and regional ecotourism opportunity that can further engage people in the protection of this habitat.