Boots On The Ground Conservation

Our mission is to restore and manage native grasslands.

Manage for Rare Species or Species Diversity?

Imagine this situation:  

You’re put in charge of managing a tallgrass prairie with thriving populations of several rare plant species. The prairie is located in a highly fragmented landscape dominated by rowcrop agriculture. The prairie has been managed with frequent spring burning for many years, and the populations of those rare plants has been pretty stable for at least the last couple of decades.

As you take over, the previous manager tells you she’d recently been considering management changes that might increase overall plant and animal diversity but would likely reduce the population sizes of some rare plant species. You have to decide whether to stick with the existing management regime or try something different.  

What would you do?