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IDNR awards $113K in wildlife habitat grants for improvement of prairies and woodlands

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Grant money from the state’s pheasant wildlife program will support up- land game conservation and restoration of prairies and woodlands in northern Illinois.

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources an- nounced this weeks grants of more than $113,000. The money comes from the State Pheasant Fund Spe- cial Wildlife Funds Grant Program. It’s replenished by proceeds from the sale of habitat stamps.

The Logan County-based Quail and Upland Game Al- liance will receive $83,362 to complete “wildlife-friend- ly management work” to pheasant ranges on both public and private land. The alliance will put up about $25,300 in matching funds.

Work will proceed on land that is not part of the fed- eral Conservation Reserve Program as well as enrolled acreage.

CRP pays farmers to take environmentally sensitive land out of production and use it to grow plants that will improve the environ- ment.

A grant of $30,000 was awarded to the Natural Land Institute. The Rock- ford-based organization’s work at Lost Flora Fen on Raccoon Creek in Winnebago County aims to restore 120 acres (48.6 hectares) of native prairie and improve 277 acres (112 hectares) of existing prairie and wood- land.

NLI staff members say the restored areas will provide better nesting locations and forage opportunities for a

variety of wildlife, including threatened and endangered species.

The Natural Resources Department has informa- tion online about the next round of grants.

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