Waubay Wetland Management District is located in the "Coteau des Prairies", or prairie hills region of South Dakota. It includes more than 300 waterfowl production areas (WPAs) in six counties of northeastern South Dakota: Clark, Codington, Day, Grant, Marshall, and Roberts. The WPAs range from 40 acres (16 ha) to more than 1,600 acres (650 ha) in size, comprising a total of 40,000 acres (160 km2). WPAs provide vital wildlife habitat in a landscape of cropland and pasture.
The Coteau des Prairies is a plateau approximately 200 miles in length and 100 miles in width, rising from the prairie flatlands in eastern South Dakota, southwestern Minnesota, and northwestern Iowa in the United States. The southeast portion of the Coteau comprises one of the distinct regions of Minnesota, known as Buffalo Ridge.
South Dakota is a U.S. state in the Midwestern region of the United States. It is named after the Lakota and Dakota Sioux Native American tribes, who compose a large portion of the population and historically dominated the territory. South Dakota is the seventeenth largest by area, but the fifth smallest by population and the 5th least densely populated of the 50 United States. As the southern part of the former Dakota Territory, South Dakota became a state on November 2, 1889, simultaneously with North Dakota. Pierre is the state capital and Sioux Falls, with a population of about 187,200, is South Dakota's largest city.
Waterfowl production areas (WPAs) are a small component of the National Wildlife Refuge System. There are over 2 million acres (8,100 km2) of this prime duck-producing land, mostly prairie potholes in the Dakotas, Minnesota, and Montana. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service owns, leases, or holds easements on the lands.
Access to all WPAs is limited to foot traffic only. Grass parking lots are available at many of the larger WPAs to provide off-road parking. There are no facilities or designated hiking trails. WPAs tend to be used very heavily during hunting seasons, but they also provide wonderful opportunities to explore the natural areas of South Dakota at other times of the year.
Hiking is the preferred term, in Canada and the United States, for a long, vigorous walk, usually on trails (footpaths), in the countryside, while the word walking is used for shorter, particularly urban walks. On the other hand, in the United Kingdom, and the Republic of Ireland, the word "walking" is acceptable to describe all forms of walking, whether it is a walk in the park or backpacking in the Alps. The word hiking is also often used in the UK, along with rambling, hillwalking, and fell walking. The term bushwalking is endemic to Australia, having been adopted by the Sydney Bush Walkers club in 1927. In New Zealand a long, vigorous walk or hike is called tramping. It is a popular activity with numerous hiking organizations worldwide, and studies suggest that all forms of walking have health benefits.
Waubay Wetland Management District includes the very first waterfowl production area - McCarlson WPA, acquired in January 1959 from Arnold and Lydia McCarlson.
Lytta nuttalli, or Nuttall's blister beetle, is a species of beetle.
Astragalus is a large genus of over 3,000 species of herbs and small shrubs, belonging to the legume family Fabaceae and the subfamily Faboideae. It is the largest genus of plants in terms of described species. The genus is native to temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere. Common names include milkvetch, locoweed and goat's-thorn. Some pale-flowered vetches are similar in appearance, but they are more vine-like than Astragalus.
The regal fritillary is a striking nymphalid butterfly found among some of the remaining tallgrass and mixed-grass prairies in the east-central United States. This prairie-specialist butterfly has a characteristic deep orange color and unmistakable dark hindwings with two bands of spots. On the female, both bands of spots are white. However, on the male, the outer band of spots is orange in color. Females also tend to be slightly larger than males. The ventral surface of the hindwings is olive brown to black in color with bold silvery white spots. The wingspan of S. idalia usually measures 68–105 millimetres (2.7–4.1 in). Flight is in the summertime from approximately June to September and adults tend to be swift in flight, coasting close to the ground. It is listed as a species of special concern and believed extirpated in the US state of Connecticut.
Huron Wetland Management District is located in the U.S. state of South Dakota and includes 17,518 acres (70.89 km2). The refuge borders the Missouri River on the east and is managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Huron WMD covers eight counties in east-central South Dakota. The topography of this area ranges from flat, gently rolling drift prairie to the Missouri Coteau hills in the western end of the district. The district lies in the midst of the world-renowned Prairie Pothole Region.
Lake Andes Wetland Management District is located in the U.S. state of South Dakota and includes 82,731 acres (334 km2). The refuge is managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Of the land area in the district, the U.S. Government owns only 19,177 acres (77.6 km2), while the remaining area is managed as an easement to help protect Waterfowl Production Areas from future development. The district oversees numerous wetland zones in an effort to ensure species protection. During Spring and Fall migration periods, tens of thousands of migratory birds can be found here, representing over 100 different species. The district is a part of the Lake Andes National Wildlife Refuge Complex. Bald eagles, northern pintail, mallards, snow geese, great grey owl, American kestrel, red-tailed hawk and prairie chicken are some of the more impressive bird species that can be found in the district.
Sand Lake Wetland Management District is located in the U.S. state of South Dakota and is administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. This is the largest Wetland Management District in the U.S., with 45,000 acres (182 km2) of area directly under federal protection and another 550,000 acres (2,225 km2) managed in partnership with private landowners as conservation easements. A total of 162 Waterfowl Production areas are located on the federally owned lands and the conservation easements are generally adjacent to these areas and act as buffer zones to increase habitat protection.
The Chase Lake Prairie Project is an effort to restore and protect the largest remaining region in the lower 48 states for waterfowl production. Located in U.S. state of North Dakota and consisting of 5,500,000 acres (22,000 km2) spread across 11 counties, this region is composed of thousands of lakes and ponds and grassland prairie. 97% of the land area is privately owned, with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service working with landowners to protect wetlands and associated prairie regions in a collaborative effort to ensure the region continues to provide habitat for the millions of birds and other wildlife that are dependent on the ecosystem.
The Valley City Wetland Management District is located in the U.S. state of North Dakota and consists of 76,000 acres (307 km2). The wetland district is a substation of the Arrowwood National Wildlife Refuge Complex, overseen by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 82 waterfowl production areas and four separate national wildlife refuges which are privately owned are in turn managed by the wetland district as easement refuges. The wetland district is in portions of 5 counties in the Prairie Pothole Region that was created by the retreat of glaciers 12,000 years ago, during the last glacial maximum. One third of the protected lands are wetlands with the balance consisting of prairie.
Audubon Wetland Management District is located in the U.S. state of North Dakota and consists of 123 Waterfowl Production Areas (WPAs), 8 National Wildlife Refuges (NWRs), and numerous wetland and grassland easements and over 100 separate wetland areas set aside to preserve habitat for bird, plant and mammal species. These lands contain valuable wetland and grassland habitat for waterfowl and other migratory birds, and many other species of wildlife. Scattered throughout west central and southwestern North Dakota in McLean, Ward, and Sheridan Counties, the district is managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and from Audubon National Wildlife Refuge. Hundreds of lakes and marshlands in this region provide critical habitat for migratory and nesting bird species.
The Lostwood Wetland Management District is located in the U.S. state of North Dakota and extends from the Canada–United States border to the neighboring state of Montana. The district consists almost exclusively of privately owned property, and landowners work cooperatively with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to manage the land to maximize natural and agricultural needs. Hundreds of small bodies of water, wetlands and uplands are set aside to increase bird productivity and provide habitat for native animals and plants. The district comprises various areas spread throughout northwestern North Dakota which include waterfowl production areas, wetland easements, grassland easements, and easement refuges. The properties are located in Mountrail and part of Ward County, North Dakota.
Lake Zahl National Wildlife Refuge is a 3,823-acre (1,547 ha) National Wildlife Refuge in Williams County in the U.S. state of North Dakota. The refuge consists of Lake Zahl which provides habitat for many species of waterfowl and other species. It is managed by the Crosby Wetland Management District.
The Michigan Wetland Management District consists of a 14-county area and includes three waterfowl production areas (WPAs): the 160-acre (0.65 km2) Schlee WPA and the 138-acre (0.56 km2) Mahan WPA in Jackson County and the 77-acre (310,000 m2) Kinney WPA in Van Buren County. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Division, oversees day-to-day management of these three areas through a partnership with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Waubay National Wildlife Refuge is a National Wildlife Refuge in South Dakota. "Waubay" means "a place where numbers of birds make their nests" in the Dakota language. The Refuge encompasses 4,650 acres (18.8 km2) of wetlands, native tallgrass prairie, and bur oak forest that provide a wide variety of nesting habitat for more than 100 species of waterfowl, song birds, and upland game birds as well as 140 additional bird species during migrations. Mammals include species from the ever-present white-tailed deer to the more elusive coyote and the diminutive pygmy shrew. The central location of Waubay National Wildlife Refuge in North America gives visitors the chance to see a mix of eastern, western, northern, and southern species.
Maple River National Wildlife Refuge is a National Wildlife Refuge in North Dakota. It is managed under Kulm Wetland Management District.
The Iowa Wetland Management District is part of Union Slough National Wildlife Refuge but is very different from other wetland management districts. Under a Memorandum of Understanding with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, the State manages many of the waterfowl production areas (WPAs) in the district. This is a partnership that has been very beneficial to the United States Fish and Wildlife Service. Together, the State and the Service have been able to develop large complexes of habitat for waterfowl and other wildlife species.
Detroit Lakes Wetland Management District is located in northwest Minnesota and includes the counties of Becker, Clay, Mahnomen, Norman, and Polk - an area of approximately 6,000 square miles (16,000 km2). The district is divided into three general landscape areas, roughly equal in size. From west to east, these are: the Red River Valley floodplain, the glacial moraine/prairie pothole region, and the hardwood/coniferous forest. The district currently manages over 42,000 acres (170 km2) of public land in 165 waterfowl production areas (WPAs). Additionally, district staff are responsible for more than 300 wetland and upland easements on private property, totaling more than 11,000 acres (45 km2).
Litchfield Wetland Management District is located on the eastern edge of the Prairie Pothole Region in central Minnesota. Here, just a little south of the famous mythological Lake Wobegone where "all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average," more than 33,000 acres (130 km2) of Service-owned land and 8,000 acres (32 km2) of wetland easements provide outstanding marsh, prairie, transition, and woodland habitats. District lands are located on over 150 waterfowl production areas scattered throughout seven counties. These areas vary greatly in size and vegetation and provide habitat for numerous plant and animal species.
The Minnesota Valley Wetland Management District is a fourteen-county district located in east central Minnesota. It includes portions of the Minnesota, Cannon, and Mississippi River watersheds.
The Windom Wetland Management District acquires and manages Waterfowl Production Areas, enforces wetland easements, and provides conservation assistance to landowners in 12 southwestern Minnesota counties. The landscape is dominated by intense, row-crop agriculture, which has led to the drainage of most wetlands and widespread water quality problems. Deteriorating drainage tile systems and the abundance of historic wetland basins provide unlimited opportunities for wetland restorations.
Devils Lake Wetland Management District is located in the heart of the Prairie Pothole Region of the United States. The District was established in 1962 to purchase and protect wetland habitat for migratory waterfowl and other wildlife in northeastern North Dakota. One of the primary objectives of Devils Lake Wetland Management District is to provide wetland and grassland habitat for waterfowl in the spring and summer for nesting and feeding. The other primary objective is to provide migration habitat for waterfowl in the spring and fall.
Located in south-central North Dakota, Kulm Wetland Management District was established in 1971. Located in the Prairie Pothole Region of North America, Kulm Wetland Management District provides breeding, nesting, and brood rearing areas for many species of waterfowl and other migratory birds. The District currently manages 201 waterfowl production areas that total 45,683 acres (184.87 km2), 3 national wildlife refuges that are easement refuges, and 120,000 acres (490 km2) of wetland and grassland easements. The District's headquarters is in Kulm, North Dakota.
Long Lake Wetland Management District encompasses three counties in south-central North Dakota, an area famed for its wealth of waterfowl-producing potholes and native prairie grasslands. Headquarters for the Wetland Management District is located in the Long Lake National Wildlife Refuge office near Moffit, North Dakota, which is about 35 miles southeast of Bismarck. Topographical landforms of the area include Missouri Coteau and Missouri River Slope. Precipitation averages just under 16 inches per year. Approximately 68 percent of the land in the three county area remains virgin sod - native mixed-grass prairie. The dominant land use is cattle grazing. The Coteau wetlands found in the northeastern portion of the Wetland Management District are classic prairie potholes of various sizes and types that are prime duck production habitat. These areas, when wet, are very productive. Soils in this area are generally deep and quite productive. Due to the rolling nature of the landscape on the Coteau, a lot of the land is also characterized as highly erodible. Conversely, many of the wetlands on Missouri River Slope portion of the Wetland Management District are large semi-permanent and permanent alkali wetlands. There are 21 wetland sites on the Missouri River Slope that have a history of periodic avian botulism outbreaks. These areas occasionally present localized problems for significant numbers of migratory birds. Soils on the Missouri River Slope are characteristically shallow with high proportions of sand and gravel. Much of the land is highly erodible. Since 1985, substantial land acreage in the three county area that was once farmed has been retired to Conservation Reserve Program grasslands. The program has assisted in restoring waterfowl populations for many species in the Wetland Management District which exceed the highest level ever recorded since surveys began.
Lying along the eastern edge of the tallgrass prairie in west-central Wisconsin, the St. Croix Wetland Management District encompasses a diversity of habitats. Within the eight-county district, one can travel north through the high river bluffs of Pepin County, to the prairie potholes of St. Croix County, and then to the pine barrens of Burnett County.
The United States Fish and Wildlife Service is an agency of the US Federal Government within the US Department of the Interior dedicated to the management of fish, wildlife, and natural habitats. The mission of the agency is "working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people."