Agenda 147th Meeting

ILLINOIS NATURE PRESERVES COMMISSION AGENDA

ONE HUNDRED AND FORTY-SEVENTH MEETING

Starved Rock State Park
Conference Center - LaSalle Room
Utica, Illinois
Tuesday, May 2, 1995 -- 10:00 a.m.

* Documentary Material Enclosed

Item 1: Call to Order, Roll Call, and Introduction of Attendees

Item 2:* Adoption of Agenda

Item 3:* Approval of Minutes of 146th Meeting, February 7, 1995

Item 4:* Next Meeting Schedule

Item 5: NPC Staff Report

REPORT
Carolyn Grosboll
Nature Preserves Commission

Item 6: DOC Staff Report

REPORT
Carl Becker
Dept. of Conservation, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 7: Public Comment Period (3 minutes per person)

Item 8:* Cumulative Report on Acquisitions through the Natural Areas Acquisition Fund

REPORT
Don McFall
Department of Conservation, Division of Natural Heritage

Item 9:* Mason County -- Registration of Bob Spanski's Walden Too as an Illinois Registered Land and Water Reserve

Bob Spanski's Walden Too is part of an approximately 118-acre farm owned by Robert Stinauer and his father, Rudolph. They wish to register 86.875 acres as a Registered Reserve under the Register of Land and Water Reserves. The proposed Registered Reserve is a large, dry sand savanna containing several small, dry sand prairie openings. Along with protection at the natural community, the registration would also provide the opportunity for continued sport hunting. The area lies in Mason County, about 8.5 miles south of Havana. This natural area lies within the Illinois River Section of the Illinois River and Mississippi River Sand Areas Natural Division. Registration of the proposed Registered Reserve will result in legal protection of over 95% of the high-quality natural area recognized by the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory.

REPORT: Mary Kay Solecki, Nature Preserves Commission

ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED: Final Approval for Registration

Item 10:* Kankakee County -- Bourbonnais Geological Area, Dedication

The Bourbonnais Geological Area was identified on the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI) as a category IV geologic area (G #19) for the outstanding natural exposure of Silurian Racine Reef. Other exceptional features noted by the INAI for this geologic area include a high-quality dolomite cliff and a terrestrial cave community. To date, 156 geologic areas at 152 sites in the state have been included on the INAI as outstanding representatives of the state's geology. Of that total, only five geologic areas have been dedicated as Illinois Nature Preserves. The Silurian Racine Reef formed between 405 and 425 million years ago from deposition of organic sediments composed primarily of marine fauna. Although northeastern Illinois is underlain by Silurian dolomite and some reef deposits, natural exposures of this bedrock are rare and occur only where torrential melt waters from retreating glaciers eroded the glacial till away. The Bourbonnais Township Park District proposes to dedicate approximately 15 acres as nature preserve, and 20 acres as nature preserve buffer.

REPORT Steven Byers, Nature Preserves Commission

ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED Preliminary Approval for Dedication

Item 11:* Kane County -- Almon Underwood Prairie, Dedication

In accordance with the wishes of former owner Bernice Meredith Lakin, the Kane County Forest Preserve District proposes to dedicate two acres of high quality dry gravel prairie as nature preserve and an additional 13 acres as nature preserve buffer. The two acres of high-quality dry gravel prairie at this Illinois Natural Area Inventory site (INAI #1412), represent approximately 10.9% (2 of 18.4 acres) of the total amount of this type of prairie know to survive in the entire state. This prairie also occurs on the northwestern terminus of the Kaneville Esker, a geologic feature identified on the INAI.

REPORT June Keibler and Steven Byers, Nature Preserves Commission

ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED Preliminary Approval for Dedication

Item 12:* Lake County -- Eastern Prairie Fringed Orchid Preserve, Dedication

Robert and Betty Coffin propose to dedicate a 12-acre site that supports a viable population of the federally threatened, state endangered Eastern Prairie Fringed Orchid (Platanthera leucophaea), as an Illinois Nature Preserve. This site was included on the Illinois Natural Areas Inventory (INAI #1231), and was formerly recognized as a Natural Heritage Landmark by the owners and the Illinois Department of Conservation. The population of Eastern Prairie Fringed Orchids at this site have responded positively to management efforts. Furthermore, the Coffin's have generously allowed local, state, and federal agency personnel to use this site for hand pollination training sessions associated with the federal recovery plan. Orchid seeds produced from this site in 1993-1994 have been distributed to other potential orchid sites as part of that federal recovery plan.

REPORT June Keibler and Steven Byers, Nature Preserves Commission

ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED Preliminary Approval for Dedication

Item 13:* Madison County -- E. Dora Bohm Memorial, Dedication

Joanne Cruickshank and Clifford L. Weidner propose to dedicate 6.14 acres of the 83-acre Bohm Woods INAI natural area as the E. Dora Bohm Memorial Nature Preserve. In 1981, the Commission approved in principle the dedication of the entire 83-acre natural area. In 1982, 10.3 acres in the northwest portion of the woods were dedicated as Bohm Woods Nature Preserve. The proposed nature preserve is located in Madison County, approximately 2 miles west of Edwardsville, and is composed entirely of grade A, mesic upland forest.

REPORT Judy Faulkner, Nature Preserves Commission

ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED Preliminary Approval for Dedication

Item 14:* Ogle County -- Heeren Prairie, Dedication

John Alesandrini is presenting a proposal to dedicate Heeren Prairie, an approximately two-acre portion of Mr. Arnold Heeren's farm in north-central Ogle County, Illinois. The site is a dry dolomite prairie that was described by the INAI as 1.1 acres of Grade A and 1.1 acres of Grades B and C (INAI #89). As with all high quality prairie remnants, this tract, which is located in the Freeport Section of the Rock River Hill County Natural Division, is of value to the Nature Preserves System because of its rarity. Since 1983, Heeren Prairie has been an Illinois Natural Heritage Landmark. Mr. Heeren has now expressed interest in dedicating the site as an Illinois Nature Preserve.

REPORT John Alesandrini, Nature Preserves Commission

ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED Preliminary Approval for Dedication

Item 15:* Johnson County -- Deer Pond Nature Preserve, Dedication

Deer Pond, one of only seven grade A cypress swamps in Illinois, is being proposed for final approval of dedication as an Illinois nature preserve. The proposed preserve is part of a 161-acre natural area located north of Old Route 146 approximately two miles west of Vienna, Illinois in the Bottomlands Section of the Coastal Plain Natural Division. The Department of Conservation owns and manages 60 acres of the wetland which contains most of the grade A swamp. One state-endangered plant, the cypress knee sedge, is known from the site while one state-endangered bird, the Cooper's Hawk, and one state-threatened bird, the Yellow-crowned Night Heron have bred there. Featherfoil, a rare plant, also occurs at the site. Dedication of the site is important because it is one of only seven grade A swamps in Illinois. This site was granted preliminary approval at the Commission's 146th Meeting (Resolution 1259).

REPORT Judy Faulkner, Nature Preserves Commission

ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED Final Approval for Dedication

Item 16:* Lake County -- Tower Lakes Fen Nature Preserve, Dedication

Tower Lakes Fen received preliminary approval for dedication at the 143rd Meeting (Resolution 1231). The 10-acre Tower Lakes Fen is owned by the Tower Lakes Improvement Association. Tower Lakes Fen is part of a wetland basin (INAI #94) that is jointly owned by Citizens for Conservation (approximately 40 acres) and the Lake County Forest Preserve District (approximately 50 acres). At least 190 native plant species have been recorded from this wetland basin, including four state endangered and four state threatened species. The portion of the wetland basin owned by Citizens for Conservation, referred to as Wagner Fen, was granted final approval at the 144th Meeting (Resolution 1241).

REPORT Steven Byers, Nature Preserves Commission

ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED Final Approval for Dedication

Item 17:* Whiteside County -- Lyndon Prairie Nature Preserve, Dedication

The proposed Lyndon Prairie Nature Preserve is a three-mile corridor of abandoned railroad right-of-way (ROW) northeast of Lyndon, Illinois in the central part of Whiteside County. Scattered remnants of dry-mesic, mesic and wet-mesic prairie occur along the ROW. Approximately four-fifths of a mile - in the center part of this section of ROW - was listed by the INAI and characterized at that time as a mixture of Grades A, B and C prairie. The Natural Land Institute, as owner thereof, proposes to dedicate approximately 23.3 acres of this ROW prairie as an Illinois Nature Preserve and an additional 12.6 acres as Nature Preserve Buffer. This site was granted preliminary approval at the Commission's 145th Meeting (Resolution 1252).

REPORT John Alesandrini, Nature Preserves Commission

ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED Final Approval for Dedication

Item 18:* Proposal to do Wetland Restoration of Buffer at Skokie River Nature Preserve

Lake Forest Open Lands Association proposes a wetland mitigation project on three acres of dedicated buffer in the Skokie River Nature Preserve (see map). The purpose is to take a currently-degraded section of land and restore it to the sedge meadow/wet prairie once extant on the site.

REPORT Stephen Christy, Lake Forest Open Lands Association; and Randy Heidorn, Nature Preserves

Commission ACTION TO BE CONSIDERED Approval of Restoration

Item 19: Other Business

Item 20: Adjournment