Spring fever has struck again. We're ready to get outside and help the river we love. Whether you want to help restore local natural areas or your own backyard, organize your own outing or keep things simple and join an existing event, FMR's got you covered.
Water is likely to be a hot topic during Minnesota's 2016 legislative session, which began Tuesday, March 8. Here are some of FMR's top legislative priorities.
Left to right: 'Rebirth' co-producer Tom Reiter, co-producer John Kaul, Sen. Dave Durenberger, Rep. Betty McCollum; Dr. John Anfinson, superintendent of our local Mississippi River national park and FMR Executive Director Whitney Clark. Photo by Anna Botz
Over 620 friends and supporters packed the Guthrie Thursday, April 7, to help celebrate the premiere of FMR's new documentary, "Rebirth: Our Mississippi River National Park." The momentous occasion featured the inspiring film, rich discussion, great camaraderie, and, of course, the Mighty Mississippi flowing by. (If you were unable to attend, we hope you'll be able to enjoy 'Rebirth' on TPT, airing Sunday, May 1, 8 and 15 at various times.)
This month's view is not as well known as last month's, but there are plenty of clues for the dedicated whose view detectives.
At long last, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has published the official notice to adopt new land-use rules for the Mississippi River critical area and our local national park. FMR led the charge to revamp the rules several years ago and has maintained a strong voice for river protection throughout the extensive rulemaking process. While we haven't completed our final analysis, here are a few highlights of the proposed rules, including better protection of scenic views and river bluffs, and an overview of the process. If all goes well, new rules could be in place by the end of 2016!
Crews work to carefully manage a burn at the Sand Coulee Scientific & Natural Area. Fire helps reduce invasive species while benefiting fire-adapted native prairie plants. Photo by Karen Schik
Fire was once commonplace on the American landscape. After nearly a century of suppression, it’s making a comeback. Find out why fires are on the rise, and how FMR uses fire as a tool to restore habitat on many of our restoration sites.
Nothing says spring like the fabulous courtship display of this odd "shorebird"!
A yellow sulphur butterfly in the bluff prairie at River Oaks park in Cottage Grove, an FMR restoration site. Photo: Joe Walton
Pollinators have had a rough go of things lately, with habitat loss and overabundant pesticide use leading to declines in many bee and butterfly species. However, it’s not all doom and gloom. These declines have sparked a renewed interest in pollinators, leading to new initiatives and funding for the conservation of these species. Find out what FMR and others are doing to protect pollinators in Minnesota.
This time of transition between winter and spring can be a wishy-washy, ambivalent affair. It’s sunny and 50 degrees, then 20 and snowing. Likewise, some bald eagles are still hanging out in their winter homes or migrating along the Mississippi River, while others are nest-bound, feeding fuzzy eaglets. Another impressive hunter, the great horned owl, is also nesting these days. Luckily, there's great local spots to see all of this avian action, both outside along the Mississippi River and online.