Conservation and Restoration Blog

FMR works with landowners, government agencies and concerned residents — including hundreds of volunteers — to protect and restore bluffs, prairies, forests and other lands important to our communities and the health of our metro Mississippi.

Here's what our conservation staff are currently working on and encountering in the field.

A map of our protection and restoration sites is available here, as well as more information about our approach and program.

Conservation updates are also shared on social media (Facebook and Twitter) and in our Mississippi Messages newsletter.

Casey Ek
November 12, 2021

Whether it's the return of grassland birds to a once-homogenous cropland we've restored to prairie, or the adaptive behaviors of urban foxes and coyotes, the well-being of Minnesota's wildlife can serve as a window into our ecosystems as we strive to be better stewards of the land. Get to know a few of the critters who find habitat in FMR restoration sites.  >>

Colleen O'Connor Toberman
October 19, 2021

When we learned that Ramsey County was considering developing open space that we believe provides essential habitat, FMR requested a natural resources inventory. The final report confirms: Endangered and rare birds depend on this grassland for their survival.  >>

Alex Roth
October 14, 2021

Our latest video created by Mike Durenberger gives a bird's eye view of the Vermillion River corridor as it flows into the Mississippi River in Hastings. FMR restores six sites along this stretch in order to connect habitat and protect water quality.  >>

October 13, 2021

Critical for wildlife, this 1,300-acre corridor of protected lands along the dramatic western bluffs of the Mississippi River south of the metro includes Pine Bend Bluffs SNA — our first major conservation project in the 1990s — an award-winning restoration, and one of our favorite places to bird and see the sweep of the river south of the cities.  >>

Karen Schik, Alex Roth
September 7, 2021

Allie was a quick study and a passionate addition to our land conservation team this summer. Here she reflects on the insect drama she witnessed while monitoring, the appeal of tiny urban prairies, and her next move.  >>

August 11, 2021

We're excited to offer two great ways to get to know this beautiful but lesser-known natural area in Hastings: a virtual bird's eye view plus a hands-on habitat restoration outing with FMR ecologists this September. >>

July 19, 2021

Ramsey County is grappling with a big question: Is responding to both our climate crisis and affordable housing crisis a zero-sum game? How can we create the housing the Twin Cities needs, while also preserving the homes of other species whose populations are collapsing?  >>

Allie Carroll
July 13, 2021

Allie Carroll, our summer field ecology intern, has a great eye for insects. We're all looking a little closer now that she’s on our team. Here's a guest post from Allie in which she gives us a tour of some of the coolest finds from her fieldwork so far.  >>

July 10, 2021

Since 2012, we've been restoring the woods, savanna, and remnant prairie still growing on the sandstone bluffs of Camel's Hump Park and Open Space, a 60-acre Cottage Grove park with a vantage that gives expansive views of the Mississippi River Valley.  >>

June 25, 2021

If you mow your lawn, you can support a long-term study on pollinator habitat by the University of Minnesota, University of St. Thomas and the U.S. Forest Service. Learn how it works and fill out the form to offer your yard as a survey site.  >>

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