Jan Welsh- Nongame Wildlife Education Specialist
Lori Naumann - Nongame Wildlife Representative
Jaime Edwards- Nongame Wildlife Specialist
3555 9th St. NW Suite 350
Rochester, MN 55901
The Central Region, including the Twin Cities metropolitan area, is home to more than half the citizens of the state. The Central Region includes twenty-three counties. Much of the landscape has been pressed into a suburban habitat. Fortunately, as a result of progressive open space planning the Twin Cities and surrounding counties maintain one of the largest urban park systems in the country. The metro area's estimated 50,000 acres of wildlife habitat include regional parks and park reserves, wildlife management areas, a national wildlife refuge, a national wild and scenic riverway, three state parks.
Wildlife remains remarkably diverse. Species once lost from the area, such as Peregrine Falcons, sandhill cranes, coyotes, Bald Eagles, river otters and Trumpeter Swans, now have reoccupied remaining habitats. Gophersnakes (Bullsnakes), spring peepers and ospreys have been reintroduced in some park reserves.
Projects done by the Nongame staff, focus on habitat restoration and improvement for nongame species such as placement of loon and osprey platforms, and prescribed burning. Survey efforts include monitoring of endangered species, and keeping records on the more common nongame species such as bluebird and common loon. Also, included are rehabilitation of injured wildlife and administration of falconry activities.