The Star Prairie Land Preservation Trust protects more than 300 acres of land in southern Polk and northern St. Croix counties:
- The McMurtrie Preserve – a 63-acre tract of land with 1,400 feet on the southeast shore of Cedar Lake that contains a diversity of wildlife habitat including wetlands, hardwoods, oak savannah and pine plantations. The McMurtrie Preserve is available for education programs such as nature walks, photo workshops, science classes and scouting programs. The adjoining house is also available for meetings (adults only). McMurtrie Preserve Trail Guide (pdf)
- Cedar Bay Landing – 1.3 acres on the southwest shore of Cedar Lake that includes a boardwalk, providing lake access for canoeing, kayaking, fishing and bird-watching.
- The Star Prairie Watershed Preserve – a 40-acre parcel of restored native prairie, located just east of Star Prairie, which complements the surrounding U.S. Fish & Wildlife Waterfowl Production Areas.
A conservation easement is a voluntary agreement that legally preserves the land’s conservation values in perpetuity. We work with landowners to design a conservation easement that protects the land’s special values and reflects the family’s goals. Although they retain the right to own and sell their property, the easement restrictions will always remain with the property’s title. In addition, donating a conservation easement to a land trust can provide significant tax advantages.
- Irle Easement – a 40-acre conservation easement of undeveloped forest land, with a rustic cabin, adjacent to U.S. Fish & Wildlife property, which includes Waterfowl Production Areas.
- Nelson Easement – a 12-acre conservation easement beginning the creation of a connected corridor between the McMurtrie Preserve and lands owned by St. Croix County.
- Schottler Easement – a 162-acre conservation easement that includes a working Christmas tree farm. This agricultural acquisition also prevents development around a 20-acre wild lake, preserves habitat for wildlife, and provides scenic rural views along the roadway.
For information on establishing a conservation easement on your land, see EASEMENTS.