Nature Hikes & Programs
Nature hikes and programs are offered throughout the year and upon request.
Go to our Calendar for details.
Naturally Speaking, a quarterly publication of the JCCB will be mailed free of charge.
Note: As of January 2007, it is also available on-line in PDF form. Go to our Newsletter page.
The Jefferson County Conservation Board in Cooperation with the Jefferson County Pheasants Forever Chapter and ConServe Corp, will assist you in establishing native prairie grasses, wildlife food plots and tree plantings.
Native Prairie Management Plan at Round Prairie
The undeveloped areas in Round Prairie Park contain many native prairie species. In the past very little had been done to manage these prairie areas and problems with woody vegetation encroachment have developed.
In Iowa it has been estimated that of an original 30 million acres of prairie only 30 thousand remain. Management techniques have been implemented by the JCCB to insure that the native prairie areas of Round Prairie will be preserved.
A preliminary inventory was done by Martha Skillman of the Iowa Prairie Network in the
summer of 1999. At that time close to forty species of native prairie forbes, grasses, and sedges were identified. It was decided that future trips would be taken throughout the growing season to account for species which were missed during the preliminary inventory.
Since then the prairie species list has grown to eighty.
Round Prairie Park contains many woody species that are encroaching into the prairie remnants. To control woody vegetation in the prairie areas various techniques are being used. Controlled burns help kill off the smaller trees and shrubs. Larger trees which are unaffected by burning will be cut down and foliar sprays may also be used to kill off persistent species such as autumn olive.
Certain tree species such as White Oak will be left since they were historically found throughout the prairie. Species which seem to spread rapidly such as ash and cottonwood will be more aggressively controlled. Mowing will also be used to control woody vegetation or to simulate grazing.
Grazing has been recommended as a tool in prairie restoration but is not possible at Round Prairie due to lack of fencing.
The re-establishment of prairie will be a long process but it's one that the JCCB feels is well-worth the effort.
Contact us for the latest information.