State Wildlife Grant - T-28-L

Project Title

Smith Grove Wildlife Management Area Addition

Target Species

Numerous species

Timeline

July 2008 – March 2009

Investigators

North Dakota Game and Fish Department

Description

This area surrounding Smith Grove Wildlife Management Area contains some of the best remaining habitat in the Missouri River corridor. The acquisition site contains roughly 30 acres of river bottom woodlands and 45 acres of native mixed-grass/shortgrass prairie and prairie woodland thickets or woody draws. Native prairie is a declining habitat in North Dakota. Prairie continues to be converted for cropland and other development. The conjunction of prairie, woodland thickets of silver buffaloberry , choke cherry, Juneberry, and various other shrubs and small trees create a diverse habitat community. It is estimated that nearly 34% of the known nesting avifauna of North Dakota can be found in woody draws or its adjacent habitat. There is very late successional stage woodland habitat in the acquisition site, similar to that of Smith Grove WMA. River accretion has helped shape over 50 acres of land suitable for early successional cottonwood habitat. A total of 208 acres is to be acquired and managed by the ND Game and Fish Department.