Why was the Initiative Created
The decline of North Dakota's prairies impacts not only grassland dependent species, but also people, communities, lifestyles, future generations, heritage and quality of life. Water, soil, energy and food are all intertwined in the fate of the prairies. And long-standing trends are raising the alarm about the fate of all those components.
- The Western meadowlark is declining 1.3% per year in North Dakota
- 53% population loss in grassland birds since 1970 (about 720 million birds)
- 72% of the native prairie has been converted to other uses
- The number of U.S. cattle ranches is declining 1% per year
- 1 out of 4 bumble bees are at risk of extinction within 50 years
- 60% of the nearly 5 million wetland acres in North Dakota have been converted or lost