Prairie Creek Wildlife Management Area:
A window into the past, present and future of Rice County, Minnesota.
Founded in 2014, Prairie Creek WMA includes the 460-acre Koester Prairie site (southwest of Dennison) and the 160 acre Engeseth-Rinde site (just north of Nerstrand.) Both sites are managed by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Explore the pages below to learn more about the rich history and promising future of our corner of Minnesota!
Prairie Creek provides visitors opportunities for amateur and experienced birders alike to go bird-watching with fellow prairie visitors.
Prairie Creek WMA provides habitat for a wide variety of plants that visitors can observe and enjoy.
Prairie restoration depends on the efforts of volunteers. The picture above shows Dave removing wild parsnip, an invasive species.
Explore the research St. Olaf and Carleton students and faculty are doing at Prairie Creek WMA.
The Koester Prairie site features native prairie, the most endangered ecosystem in North America, as well as oak savanna, another rapidly vanishing habitat. It is home to numerous species of native plants, birds, and mammals.
Koester Prairie Site
The Engeseth-Rinde site was added in 2015 and is being restored from agricultural uses to feature oak savannah, prairie, and wetlands. Don Nelson, the former owner of the site, donated the land to be used for conservation, education, and research.