Bird's Eye View

By Rowan McMullen Cheng on August 12, 2019 in Blog


Rising more than 300 feet overlooking the Mississippi River, two recently acquired additions to Lansing WMA permanently protect one of Iowa's most stunning viewsheds. Photo by Brian Fankhauser

INHF recently acquired two additions to Lansing Wildlife Management Area (WMA) in Allamakee County to create a larger protected wildlife complex in northeastern Iowa.

Adjacent to Fish Farm Mounds State Preserve, Black Hawk Point WMA, the Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge, the Great River Road National Scenic Byway and the Mississippi River Bike Trail, these additions protect 317 acres of quality woodland and wildlife habitat. Rising more than 300 feet overlooking the Mississippi River, they’ll also permanently protect one of Iowa’s most stunning viewsheds.

“The blufflands provide a significant natural viewshed that is limited in distribution and in a relatively unaltered state,” said INHF Blufflands Director Brian Fankhauser. “They’re a visually appealing resource due to their often steep topography, rock outcroppings, natural woodland and hill prairie habitats.”

Low-impact recreational opportunities abound in both additions with ample space for wilderness hikes, photography, hunting and wildlife observation in the properties’ rugged valleys and ridges of deciduous woodland.

“These uses help build an appreciation for Iowa’s outdoors,” said Fankhauser. “These additions also protect the scenic qualities that benefit local tourism, especially for fall foliage viewers.”

Both additions provide important habitat for nesting and migratory birds, game and non-game species including some of Iowa’s Species of Greatest Conservation Need. The large blocks of woodland are especially important for area-sensitive Neotropical migratory bird species like the Acadian flycatcher, Cerulean warbler and Veery.