Evaluating The Range of Conditions at Possible Restoration Sites
Remaining wetland prairies in the valley, which total approximately 2% of historic extent, are generally degraded and highly fragmented. Agricultural conversion has been the most common activity leading to this dramatic decline.
Although agricultural practices have generally eliminated the native plant community in these areas, the soils and hydrologic conditions that once supported the ecosystem are sometimes still intact or only moderately altered, therefore making these areas well suited for wetland prairie restoration. Many other former wetland prairie areas and remnants possess high potential for restoration or enhancement. These lands fall into the following basic categories (listed from least to most impacted):