Best Pheasants Forever! Nature Reserve Purchased by Pheasants Forever for Public Conservancy
Pheasants Forever buys 185 acres of natural wetland and woodland for habitation preservation Words by Carlee Shimek
Pheasants Forever are now parents to 185 acres of a beautiful wetland area located just north of Bloomer WI, about thirty minutes from Eau Claire. With Larson Realty as the broker finalizing the transaction, David Stanton graciously handed over ownership of his land to Pheasants Forever. It is perfect for a Chippewa Valley nature conservancy. Pheasants Forever intend to donate it to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) in a “passing-on-the-torch” gesture.
David Stanton, a retired director of sales and living about 13 miles from the sold acreages in Newauburn, WI, purchased the land ten years ago from an Eau Claire family that he knew. He mostly used it as a recreation spot for hunting and relaxing.
“It was very diverse,” he said. “It had some wetland reserve that was part of the wetland reserve program. It had some woods. It had the Class 1 trout stream going through it. And it also had some farmland that I put into the CRP program.”
Stanton sold the acres with the farmland in a sales venture separate from Pheasants Forever and listed the land for sale in February 2021 through Larson Realty. While still owning the property, he allowed the Wisconsin DNR to develop a pond system for habitation and other wetland preservation programs within the area.
Through these interactions, Stanton had close contact with the local Chippewa Valley Chapter of Pheasants Forever, and after the property went on the market, plans formed to have Larson Realty mediate the transaction between Stanton and Pheasants Forever.
Pheasants Forever is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to the restoration and preservation of wildlife and their habitats. They coordinate habitat projects and educational programs to inform the public about nature, hunting safety, and the importance of keeping wildlife habitation safe.
The deal began in March of 2021 and was finalized the following year. Pheasants Forever managed to purchase the land of 185 acres for $408,766. According to Marty Moses, the Wisconsin state coordinator for Pheasants Forever, multiple sources contributed to the funds needed to purchase the land, such as the local Chippewa County Stewardship Fund and Chippewa Valley Chapter of Pheasants Forever, as well as larger organizations like the National Wild Turkey Federation and the Knowles-Nelson Stewardship Program by the Wisconsin DNR.
“It’s just another great opportunity to go explore Wisconsin outdoor opportunities and lifestyle and recreation and just to be connected with nature,” Moses said. “There are great opportunities to explore well-restored diverse prairie as well as a well-managed wetland site.”
Though Pheasants Forever currently holds ownership, they intend to donate it to the Wisconsin DNR this summer, which will then maintain its wetland and prairie habitats, along with it continuing to be open to the public for outdoor recreation such as hiking, fishing, and hunting.
The 185 acres of newly purchased public conservancy sits right next to the McCann Creek State Fishery Area. It is another public nature reserve for similar recreational activities that includes a Class 1 trout stream, the highest classification by the Wisconsin DNR for quality trout population sustainability.
To learn more about Pheasants Forever and the work they do with habitat management, visit pheasantsforever.org.