On the Ground: Volunteers Enhance Game Bird Habitat at Potterville State Game Area

Volunteers work to plant 270 shrubs in Potterville SGA.

This past Saturday, April 30, 2022, 9 On the Ground volunteers gathered at the south entrance of Potterville State Game Area (SGA) to assist Eaton Conservation District in planting 270 native trees and shrubs.

Silky dogwood is a popular mast-producing plant that provides forage for wildlife including rabbits, white-tailed deer and pheasants.

The Potterville SGA is a relatively new land acquisition by the MI DNR and was purchased under the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund. This area is currently being managed for grassland restoration to increase pheasant and small game hunting opportunity. In 2021, Eaton Conservation District (ECD) was awarded a grant that will aid in wetland restoration and wildlife enhancement at the SGA through 2023. With funds from this grant, ECD purchased tree and shrub seedlings to be planted by volunteers for Arbor Day. The group of volunteers was small, but with hard work and determination, all plants were put in the ground in under 3 hours! In total, volunteers impacted 8 acres of wildlife habitat on public land.

Species that were planted included highbush cranberry, American hazelnut, silky dogwood, and buttonbush. These mast-producing plants will provide a variety of wildlife with cover and forage for years to come. For more information on wildlife-friendly shrubs and trees that you can plant in your own backyard, click HERE.

If you would like to get involved in an On the Ground project near you, visit our events page at mucc.org/on-the-ground/.

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