Friday, March 29, 2013

Bison at Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie Open House

The U.S. Forest Service will be holding an Open House on Wednesday April 3, 2013 for community members to come and learn more about the proposal to establish a bison herd on Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie.  Staff and partners from the National Forest Foundation will be available to explain more about the proposal, the environmental assessment process, and answer questions.  The Open House will be held between the hours of 3:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. at the Midewin Welcome Center--30239 S. State Route Illinois 53, Wilmington, IL.

The Forest Service at Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie (Midewin) is proposing to establish a small herd of bison on the Prairie and will be preparing an environmental assessment for Bison Herd Establishment in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).  In partnership with the National Forest Foundation (NFF), Midewin is proposing to develop a bison grazing area on approximately 1,200 acres.  A herd of bison would be established and allowed to graze on an experimental basis, to determine the success of prairie ecosystem restoration using bison grazing practices.  Midewin officials believe establishing a herd of bison on Midewin would bring more visitors to Midewin. The proposed project site is located east of Illinois 53, in the pastures south of the Iron Bridge Trailhead and north of Prairie Creek.