Nature Preserves

Flora Prairie Nature Preserve – Boone County

Location and Access:

This publicly owned Boone County preserve is located southwest of Belvidere: 3 miles south of I-90 on Stone Quarry Rd., then 3.5 miles west on Poole Rd. A small parking area is provided just off Poole Rd. on the south side of the nature preserve.

Description:

Flora Prairie is a dry dolomite prairie that includes both high and moderate quality portions, a small wooded ravine and several large, spreading bur oaks. The state endangered wooly milkweed was collected here in 1946 by E.W. Fell, but has not been observed in recent times. Flora is one of the very few native prairie remnants remaining in Boone County.

Ownership: Boone County Conservation District

Dedicated: August 1993

Size: 9.67 acres

Topo Map: Cherry Valley 7.5

 

Kinnikinnick Creek Nature Preserve – Boone County

From Caledonia at jct. Hwy. 173 and Caledonia Road, take Caledonia Road 3.5 mi. north to Kinnikinnick Creek Conservation Area, which is west of the road. The nature preserve is in the county conservation area. A parking lot is on the east side of the preserve.

Description:

This 57 acre preserve is typical of the forests found in the Rock River Valley at the prairie-forest border. It contains a spring-fed creek, upland forest, floodplain forest, and bedrock outcrops of the Winnebago Section of the Northeastern Morainal Natural Division. In presettlement times, oak savannas were probably very common in Boone County, and this preserve contains some savanna remnants. The dominant canopy species is white oak, with ironwood , cherry, ash, and basswood as common associates. The upland community gives way to a floodplain forest along Kinnikinnick Creek. It contains black willow, butternut, and box elder. Some of the associated wetland plants include skunk cabbage, great angelica, blueflag iris, sedges and rushes. Kinnikinnick Creek is a spring-fed stream, and although it drains a watershed of about 11,520 acres, it retains a high quality status. The creek supports two unusual fish species: mottled sculpin and Ozark minnow. Other woodland wildlife is abundant; great horned owl, red-tailed hawk, raccoon and deer, are just a few of the area residents. Exotic species control (multiflora rose, buckthorn, and honeysuckle) and erosion control are management priorities.

Ownership: Boone County Conservation District

Dedicated: November 1974

Size: 57 acres with an additional 45 acre buffer

Topo Map: Belvidere 7.5

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