Conservation Minnesota

Winter 2014 Newsletter: Meet the Outdoor Heritage Fund

Veterans-State-Wildlife-Management-Area-ThumbnailTo celebrate the Clean Water, Land, and Legacy Amendment’s five-year anniversary, we’ve been highlighting the accomplishments brought about by these funds. This issue we’ll celebrate what has been accomplished for Minnesota’s rich and diverse wildlife habitat.

One-third of the Amendment’s revenue goes to the Outdoor Heritage Fund which supports projects that protect, enhance, and restore Minnesota’s wildlife habitat. The Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council, led by citizens and legislators, makes recommendations on how to allocate the funds. In the last five years, so much has already been accomplished:

  • Over 20,000 acresof wildlife management areas, aquatic management areas, and waterfowl production areas have been protected, providing new public access for hunting, fishing, and wildlife watching.
  • 180,000 acres of working forests have been protected near Grand Rapids, conserving over 60,000 acres of wetlands and over 280 miles of stream, lake, and river frontage, providing public access for hunting and recreation, and supporting forest industry jobs.
  • 67 shallow lakes that provide critical waterfowl habitat are being restored.
  • Nearly 25 miles of trout stream shorelinehave been protected.
  • Over 10 miles of critical wild rice lake shorelinehave been preserved.
  • 40,000 acres of private wetland and grassland easements are reducing runoff into rivers and lakes as well as providing wildlife habitat.

Most recently, Outdoor Heritage funds helped create Minnesota’s newest wildlife management area, the 604-acre Veterans State Wildlife Management Area near Clearwater. The new refuge protects a diverse landscape including oak forest, marshes, and restored prairie, which not only offers key hunting opportunities but also provides habitat to populations of eagles and sandhill cranes.

These are just a few examples of the success of the Outdoor Heritage Fund. Learn more about Amendment projects or funding sources on our website.

Read the rest of the Winter 2014 Newsletter

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