State Awards $113K In Wildlife Habitat Improvement Grants

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

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources announced this weeks grants of more than $113,000. The money comes from the State Pheasant Fund Special Wildlife Funds Grant Program. It's replenished by proceeds from the sale of habitat stamps.

The Logan County-based Quail and Upland Game Alliance will receive $83,362 to complete “wildlife-friendly 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 federal 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 environment.

A grant of $30,000 was awarded to the Natural Land Institute. The Rockford-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 woodland.

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 information online about the next round of grants.