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Minnesota Land Trust

Minnesota Land Trust, a nonprofit 501(c)(3)

 2356 University Avenue West, Suite 240

Saint Paul, MN 55114

Phone: 651-647-9590

1-877-MLT-LAND

Email: mnland@mnland.org

 

Staff Directory

Office Locations & Directions

 

Located on the Green Line, across the street from Raymond Station. On bus routes 16, 21, 63 and 67. Nice Ride location across the street, available seasonally. Parking available on the south side of the building and on the street (metered).

 

 

 

 
Land Trust Accreditation Commission    Charities Review Council


 

Interest for Others  Guidestar Platinum

 

Clean Water Land and Legacy Amendment Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund

Friday
May112018

Protecting the waters of the Mississippi

In northern Itasca County, in an area surrounded by small, clear water lakes and deep rich forests, lies the property of Mary Killeen and Jacob Fillion. First homesteaded in 1898, the property has been in the family for 120 years. Now, thanks to a conservation easement with the Minnesota Land Trust, it will forever be kept in its natural state, just like it was back when the original log cabin was built on the land.

"As we went up to the land year after year, and put in a management plan with the Forest Service, we became more educated on the uniqueness of this property," says Mary. "That process of gradually understanding the value and importance of it overall was like a conversion for me - and I decided there was no way it was going to get sold, no way it was going to be developed. It was going to stay this way forever."

 

image credit Veronica Phillips

"We can be assured this land will stay the same now -- the animals and everything the land feeds, will be there for perpetuity.” adds Jacob.

Mary and Jacob have seen wolves, black bears, and a number of birds on their land, including a pair of nesting loons that return every year. Beyond the wildlife, this property is also of importance because it falls in the Mississippi River Headwaters. The shorelines on Ann Lake and Link Lake protected by this conservation easement will remain undisturbed forever, protecting the water quality of the lakes, and ultimately of the Mississippi River.

"This property is important in terms of water quality, and also because of its great importance to fish and wildlife species in northern Minnesota," says Pat Collins, program manager with the Minnesota Land Trust. "By protecting their land with the Land Trust, Mary and Jacob are helping build critical connections for the wildlife and birds that rely on this unique Minnesota habitat to survive. And with the land staying in private hands, the landowners will continue to pay property taxes, recreate, and actively manage the land as they have been which is great for the region."

"On our latest drive up as we crossed the Mississippi, it was exciting to cross it and know that a little bit of that is us," says Jacob. “Since our land is in the watershed, we have a little something to do with the water reaching the Gulf of Mexico."

"Protecting the water quality and critical wildlife habitat of our state depends on the generous spirit of Minnesotans like Mary and Jacob,” says Kris Larson, executive director of the Minnesota Land Trust. “By taking this important step to preserve their land forever, they have highlighted a unique part of our state’s heritage and help to protect Minnesota’s clean water legacy."

This permanent conservation easement was made possible thanks to the members of the Minnesota Land Trust and with funding from the Outdoor Heritage Fund, as appropriated by the Minnesota State Legislature and recommended by the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council (LSOHC). Thank you to all our members and supporters, and most of all to Mary Killeen and Jacob Fillion who protected this unique property forever!

Wednesday
Apr182018

A win for Minnesota birds

In the upper reaches of Northwestern Minnesota, along the border with Canada, lies the property of Wayne and Keith Johnson. Over 100 acres of classic Minnesota aspen woodland and sedge meadow wetlands - home to birds, bear, elk, and moose - are now protected forever thanks to a conservation easement with the Minnesota Land Trust.

This unique property falls within an Audubon Important Bird Area (IBA) and a Minnesota Prairie Conservation Plan Core Area, and its protection is the result of a partnership between the Minnesota Land Trust and Audubon Minnesota who are working to protect over 450 acres of land together. With support from the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council (LSOHC), the goal of the partnership is to preserve essential wildlife habitat in the Tallgrass Aspen Parkland eco-region. The National Audubon Society has identified areas vital to birds and other wildlife across the country as a priority for conservation efforts. This property is in the Kittson-Roseau Aspen Parkland IBA, where Audubon Minnesota has compiled the documentation of over 262 different bird species. Sharp-tailed grouse and sandhill cranes have been spotted on the Johnson family property which is providing habitat for a host of other birds and wildlife.

“Important Bird Areas help guide conservation actions on the ground” said Alex Wardwell, Audubon Minnesota. “The Johnsons’ conservation easement, within this larger IBA and prairie core, is one piece in the landscape, but it adds considerable value to the overall integrity of other conserved lands and will have an positive and enduring impact on wildlife populations.”

Beyond the birds, this property is also of importance because it provides habitat for some of the few remaining Minnesota elk herds. With 79 elk counted in the last DNR survey in our state, every acre of habitat counts. Preserving natural grasslands in this region as elk habitat can also relieve some of the conflicts that arise when elk browse cultivated lands. Protecting private land can expand the impacts of other protected public and private lands, by creating corridors for wildlife and larger habitat blocks.

"There are more than 20,000 acres of protected lands in wildlife management areas around this particular property," says Pat Anderson, program manager with the Minnesota Land Trust. "By protecting their land with the Land Trust, Wayne and Keith are helping build critical connections for the wildlife and birds that rely on those areas to survive. And the fact that the land will stay private is important, as the landowners will continue to pay property taxes, hunt, recreate, and manage the land as they have been."

Alex Wardwell, (Audubon Minnesota); Elden Johnson; Wayne and Keith Johnson; Pat Anderson (Minnesota Land Trust)“Protecting the natural places of our state for future generations depends on the generous spirit of Minnesotans like Wayne and Keith as well as partnerships like this one with Audubon Minnesota,” says Kris Larson, executive director of the Minnesota Land Trust. “By taking this important step to preserve their land forever, they have really preserved a unique part of our state for all Minnesotans.”

“It was a pleasure to work with the team from Minnesota Land Trust and Audubon Minnesota as we looked into putting some of our land into an easement with them.” says Wayne Johnson. “They were very patient with us as we went through the process and then explained in detail what it would mean to us, and to the preserving of our land. Their extreme thoroughness helped us feel very comfortable with our decision to partner with them.”

This permanent conservation easement was made possible thanks to the members of the Minnesota Land Trust and with funding from the Outdoor Heritage Fund, as appropriated by the Minnesota State Legislature and recommended by the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council (LSOHC). Thank you to Audubon Minnesota, all our members and supporters, and most of all to Wayne and Keith Johnson who protected this unique property forever!