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Southern Iowa wildlife areas beginning annual fall burns to benefit wildlife

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources plans to conduct prescribed burns on select wildlife areas in Ringgold, Union, Decatur, Adair, and Adams counties between October and December to improve wildlife habitat, control invasive plant species, and restore and maintain native plant communities. 

Ground nesting birds such as pheasants, mallards, bobolinks, dickcissels and many others benefit from habitat improved with periodic prescribed fire. Burning removes the accumulated thatch and reinvigorates native plants by simulating what occurred naturally for centuries.

Areas are typically burned every 1-5 five years and vary in size from 10 to 1,000 acres or more.  Burns are conducted on days that meet objectives and weather guidelines defined in the burn plan.  

For questions or concerns about prescribed burns, contact Josh Rusk with the Iowa DNR’s Wildlife Bureau Grand River Unit, at 641-783-2166. 
 

Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs) Burn Schedule

  • Kellerton WMA: Ringgold County, 7 miles east of Mt. Ayr, just south of State Hwy. 2.
  • Ringgold WMA: Ringgold County, 6 miles south of Mt. Ayr on P46, 5 miles east on J55.
  • Mt. Ayr WMA: Ringgold County, 2 miles south of Mt. Ayr on Hwy. 169, 2 miles west on J43.
  • Fogle Lake WMA: Ringgold County, northwest corner of Diagonal, planning a late summer burn.
  • Three Mile Lake WMA: Union County, 2.5 miles west of Afton, 3 miles north on Lark Ave.
  • Adair WMA: Adair County, about 3 miles west of Fontanelle on State Hwy. 92.
  • Meadow Lake WMA: Adair County, about 5 miles north of Greenfield on State Hwy. 25 and ½ mile east on 180th St.
  • Sand Creek WMA: Ringgold/Decatur Counties, 1.4 miles west of Grand River on J20, 1.5 miles north on 110th Ave.
  • Dekalb WMA: Decatur County, 5.5 miles east of Grand River on J20, 1/2 mile north on 185th Ave
  • Lake Icaria: Adams County, 4 mile north of Corning on State Hwy. 148

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