Branch of Conservation Planning
Midwest Region

See the CCP

The comprehensive conservation plan is provided here in portable document format (pdf). To see files, you need Acrobat Reader software, and it is available for free on the Adobe website.


Comprehensive Conservation Plan

Complete CCP (1.3 MB)
Dear Reader (32 KB)
Vision and Contents (84 KB)
Introduction (888 KB)
Opportunities and Issues (180 KB)
Goals, Objectives, and Strategies (133 KB)
Plan Implementation (310 KB)
Glossary (61 KB)

Environmental Assessment

Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) (66 KB)
Abstract (57 KB)
Table of Contents (40 KB)
Chapter 1 (195 KB)
Chapter 2 (63 KB)
Chapter 3 (142 KB)
Chapter 4 (127 KB)
Chapter 5 (51 KB)
References (62 KB)
Appendix (125 KB)

Union Slough National Wildlife Refuge Comprehensive Conservation Plan

Comprehensive Conservation Plan Completed
Where Are We in the Planning Process?
The Summary CCP

Comprehensive Conservation Plan Completed

Union Slough National Wildlife Refuge, located in Kossuth County, Iowa, will soon be transformed into a Wildlife Refuge for the 21st century. The Refuge watershed will become a model of sustainability showing how modern agriculture and natural areas can thrive side by side. Through new partnerships, the watershed will see widespread use of Best Management Practices, Precision Farming, Integrated Crop Management, and other conservation and environmental farming practices.

The Refuge will expand to support and maintain a community of organisms having a species composition, diversity, and functional organization comparable to that of native habitats of this region. Wildlife abundance and educational opportunities will attract students of all ages and abilities to learn about the refuge watershed ecosystem. Local communities will promote the Refuge as a regional destination which contributes to the local economy.

Where Are We in the Planning Process?

These are the steps that the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service follows in comprehensive conservation planning; the step that the Sherburne NWR has reached is highlighted:

  1. Preplanning: Plan the Plan
  2. Initiate Public Involvement and Scoping
  3. Review Vision Statement and Goals and Determine Significant Issues
  4. Develop and Analyze Alternatives, Including the Proposed Action
  5. Prepare a Draft CCP and NEPA (National Environmental Policy Act) Document
  6. Prepare and Adopt Final CCP
  7. Implement Plan, Monitor and Evaluate
  8. Review and Revise the Plan

The Summary CCP

The Comprehensive Management Plan serves as a guide for refuge staff, partners and friends to ensure long-term refuge health and biological integrity. This summary includes the following sections:

Watershed Stewardship
Potential Watershed Project
Public Use
Habitat and Wildlife
Priority Projects Identified in the Plan

Watershed Stewardship

The quality of Union Slough's wetland habitat is largely related to land management practices within the Refuge watershed.

Studies indicate that waters entering the Refuge from the surrounding watershed transport large amounts of silt, sediments, and nutrients which, over time, cause major physical, chemical, and biological changes within Refuge wetlands.

To combat these impacts, the Refuge has established these objectives to improve water quality by the year 2011:

Potential Watershed Project

To improve water quality, constructed treatment wetlands could be used to remove sediment and nitrates before they enter Refuge wetlands.

Public Use

The Refuge is the largest parcel of public land in Kossuth County. It will provide a greater contribution to the quality of life for local residents by preserving the region's natural and aesthetic beauty as well as affording wildlife-dependent recreational and educational opportunities.

Expanding public use of the Refuge is considered a priority over the course of the next fifteen years. The Refuge will increase its public use through increased visitation, additional environmental education programs, and enhanced hunting and fishing access.

Habitat and Wildlife

Habitat and wildlife management at the Refuge requires a variety of techniques to preserve and enhance marsh and upland habitats for wildlife.

To meet the critical needs of migratory birds, the Refuge will expand and enhance wetland and grassland habitats within selected portions of the watershed.

Over the next 15 years the Refuge will:

Priority Projects Identified in the Plan

Last updated: June 3, 2016
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