Hunters, trappers and wildlife watchers in Becker, Mahnomen and Norman counties benefit from the management, habitat and oversight work of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources' Detroit Lakes area wildlife staff.
Area Supervisor Rob Baden, two full-time staff and two seasonal laborers oversee an area that includes 1.4 million acres of public and private land. This includes 53 Wildlife Management Areas totaling more than 28,082 acres; two state game refuges; two wildlife sanctuaries; and one waterfowl refuge.
Baden and his staff also help coordinate wildlife management on thousands of acres of state forest administered lands, plus collaborative habitat restoration efforts with conservation groups like the Minnesota Prairie Chicken Society, Pheasants Forever, Ducks Unlimited and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. A significant accomplishment in 2017 was the acquisition of 4 tracts of land (1,086 acres) that will make up the brand new Prairie Dunes WMA in Norman County. Pheasants Forever and the Minnesota Prairie Chicken Society were instrumental in acquiring two of the tracts. All four parcels were acquired using proceeds from the Outdoor Heritage Fund.
- What we do
At work for you
Youth from the Ada school district visited the Faith WMA in Norman County and assisted with a new prairie seeding to learn about prairie restorations and ecosystems.
- Completing 418 acres of prairie restoration on Melby, Hubbel Pond, Vanose, Spring Creek, Bejou, Moccasin, Faith, and Prairie Dunes WMA.
- Conducting prescribed burns on 24 sites totaling 3,561 acres of prairie.
- Completing 154 acres of prairie restoration on Hubbel Pond, Syre, Twin Valley and Wambach WMA.
- Restoring 36 previously drained small wetlands on Faith and Moccasin WMA. Restoration was completed through dike building, ditch plugs and sediment removal.
- Removing trees and brush from upland prairie areas on seven WMAs totaling 171 acres.
- Mowing 60 miles of Hunter Walking Trails.