Natural Areas Management since 1997
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Tree & Brush Removal

Prior to Euro-settlement, wildfire was a preeminent factor in the development and function of  the Midwest's natural communities. In the time since European settlement, the unnatural absence of fire has led to devastating successional change in these communities. Whether it be invasive shrubs like Multiflora Rose and Autumn Olive, canopy reduction in your Oak Woodland, or large-scale tree clearing projects, DLS has the experience and equipment to get the job done efficiently with the utmost attention to ecological detail. 
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Rx Fire

The Midwest's pre-Eurosettlement natural communities are largely the product of wildfire. In the time since European settlement, the unnatural absence of fire has led to devastating successional change in these communities. Succession favors shade-tolerant species and selects against  (and thus critically imperils) shade-intolerant species. The ecological health of your property may thus be dependant upon the reintroduction of fire. Offering prescribed fire services since our inception in 1997, Driftless Land Stewardship LLC is the largest prescribed fire provider in the region. On the most rugged terrain in the Midwest, our crews burn ~2k acres annually. When it comes to extreme topography, varied natural communities, and the wildland / urban interface; DLS burns it regularly.
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Weed Management

Newly-introduced and unnaturally-abundant species are a common threat to the form and function of our natural comminities. With few equals in terms of experience and continually developing new techniques, Driftless Land Stewardship LLC has become a nationally-recognized leader in the field of weed management.
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Rx Grazing

Farmers and land managers have long understood that grazing animals impact the plant community upon which they graze. Additionally, it is well understood that managed grazing (i.e. altering stocking rate, type of livestock, timing and duration of grazing) can be used to achieve specific ecological results. In our work to manage natural communities in the Midwest, we are continually battling invasive plants and the brushy results of fire suppression. Goats, unlike cattle and other livestock, will happily eat anything that resembles vegetation. Yes... they happily eat Multiflora Rose, Canada Thistle, Red Cedar, etc. This makes a managed goat herd a perfect addition to our natural areas management team.
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Natural Community Reconstruction

In the time since European settlement the region's natural communities have suffered substantial degradation.  The complex ecological system that developed over eons, our life support system, has been wantonly dismantled.  In many instances the components of the system have been eliminated; the form and function of the native natural community is beyond rehabilitation.      In such a situation native species can be reintroduced to restore ecological function. Such reintroductions can be designed to closely replicate native natural communities or, when budget is a limiting factor, be designed to perform specific ecological functions.
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Riparian & Wetland Management

In the Driftless Area, all water is in motion. Every surface that receives rainfall, every seep and wetland, every ravine, creek, and river, like leaves and branches of a tree, is part of the Mississippi, one of the largest and most celebrated rivers on Earth. European settlement brought a wave of physical disturbance, the extirpation and introduction of species, the interruption of natural processes, and hydrological alteration. Wetlands were ditched, tiled and filled; streams were choked with silt, straightened, diked and dammed; natural communities and their hydrological functions (soil binding, evapotranspiration, water retention and groundwater recharge) were altered.   In addition to being a recognized leader in the management of terrestrial natural communities, Driftless Land Stewardship LLC has decades of experience managing our landscape’s wetlamd and riparian systems.
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Ecological Services

Founded in 1997, Driftless Land Stewardship LLC is a full-service Natural Areas Management firm. We specialize in rehabilitation and management of natural communities, creation and management of surrogate habitat, and invasive species control. Not just an after-thought, managing natural areas is what we do.
Driftless Land Stewardship LLC

Property Oversight & General

Contracting

A 20 year reputation for integrity and trust, coupled with decades of experience, makes DLS particularly well-suited to oversee and manage a wide range of property-related issues. From simple security checks, to overseeing maintenance and repair, to mastering unique challenges- DLS can be your eyes and boots on the ground.
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Bio-Control

When humans transport species around the globe, either purposefully or accidentally, we commonly do not transport the species' natural, co-evolved “enemies.” This factor occasionally permits a species to grow and reproduce with substantially more vigor, often to the detriment of natural communities in the species' new home.  Bio-control is the practice of introducing a species' natural “enemy” to restore the natural checks and balances of the co-evolved species interaction. Whereas bio-control was once the foolish practice of haphazardly introducing possible competitive species (think Asian Lady Beetle), it is now a carefully researched and controlled science. Potential bio-control agents are carefully selected to ensure host specificity and minimize risk of non-target impact.
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Natural Areas Forestry

Natural Areas Forestry is the use of commercial forestry as a means to achieve ecological objectives related to natural areas management / ecological restoration. Since European settlement, fire supression has permitted fire-intolerant trees to invade many formerly-open natual communities. Occasionally these adventive trees have commercial value. DLS's Natural Area Forestry program specializes in salvaging and marketing these commercially valuable trees  while restoring natural community structure and composition. In addition to harvest and marketing administration, our Natural Areas Forester specializes in providing forestry-related consultation to landowners engaged in natural areas management.
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Property Clean-up

Fenceline removal Trash / “junk ditch” clean-up Building demolition
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Nature Preserve Development

Trail clearing and infrastructure Walkway and bridge installation Interpretive signage / literature Geographic Information System (GIS) data management Data collection, management & mapping.
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Ecological Consultation

Natural Areas Management plans Biological surveys Rx Burn plans Conservation grant application (USDA, USFWS, DNR,etc.) Oversight and remediation of forestry and development activities Conservation easement facilitation and oversight Prescribed Grazing Plans and Consultation Marketing of excess timber Managed Forest Law (WI) consultation and administration GIS / GPS data collection, management & mapping. Pre-purchase/sale of real estate ecological assessment (rehabilitation potential, Floristic Quality Index, invasive species, etc.) General guidance
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Ecological Services

Founded in 1997, Driftless Land Stewardship LLC is a full-service Natural Areas Management firm. We specialize in rehabilitation and management of natural communities, creation and management of surrogate habitat, and invasive species control. Not just an after-thought, managing natural areas is what we do.
Driftless Land Stewardship LLC

Tree & Brush Removal

Prior to Euro-settlement, wildfire was a preeminent factor in the development and function of  the Midwest's natural communities. In the time since European settlement, the unnatural absence of fire has led to devastating successional change in these communities. Whether it be invasive shrubs like Multiflora Rose and Autumn Olive, canopy reduction in your Oak Woodland, or large-scale tree clearing projects, DLS has the experience and equipment to get the job done efficiently with the utmost attention to ecological detail. 
More Info

Rx Fire

The Midwest's pre-Eurosettlement natural communities are largely the product of wildfire. In the time since European settlement, the unnatural absence of fire has led to devastating successional change in these communities. Succession favors shade-tolerant species and selects against  (and thus critically imperils) shade-intolerant species. The ecological health of your property may thus be dependant upon the reintroduction of fire. Offering prescribed fire services since our inception in 1997, Driftless Land Stewardship LLC is the largest prescribed fire provider in the region. On the most rugged terrain in the Midwest, our crews burn ~2k acres annually. When it comes to extreme topography, varied natural communities, and the wildland / urban interface; DLS burns it regularly.
More Info

Rx Grazing

Farmers and land managers have long understood that grazing animals impact the plant community upon which they graze. Additionally, it is well understood that managed grazing (i.e. altering stocking rate, type of livestock, timing and duration of grazing) can be used to achieve specific ecological results. In our work to manage natural communities in the Midwest, we are continually battling invasive plants and the brushy results of fire suppression. Goats, unlike cattle and other livestock, will happily eat anything that resembles vegetation. Yes... they happily eat Multiflora Rose, Canada Thistle, Red Cedar, etc. This makes a managed goat herd a perfect addition to our natural areas management team.
More Info

Rx Grazing

Farmers and land managers have long understood that grazing animals impact the plant community upon which they graze. Additionally, it is well understood that managed grazing (i.e. altering stocking rate, type of livestock, timing and duration of grazing) can be used to achieve specific ecological results. In our work to manage natural communities in the Midwest, we are continually battling invasive plants and the brushy results of fire suppression. Goats, unlike cattle and other livestock, will happily eat anything that resembles vegetation. Yes... they happily eat Multiflora Rose, Canada Thistle, Red Cedar, etc. This makes a managed goat herd a perfect addition to our natural areas management team.
More Info

Natural Community Reconstruction

In the time since European settlement the region's natural communities have suffered substantial degradation.  The complex ecological system that developed over eons, our life support system, has been wantonly dismantled.  In many instances the components of the system have been eliminated; the form and function of the native natural community is beyond rehabilitation.      In such a situation native species can be reintroduced to restore ecological function. Such reintroductions can be designed to closely replicate native natural communities or, when budget is a limiting factor, be designed to perform specific ecological functions.
More Info

Riparian & Wetland Management

In the Driftless Area, all water is in motion. Every surface that receives rainfall, every seep and wetland, every ravine, creek, and river, like leaves and branches of a tree, is part of the Mississippi, one of the largest and most celebrated rivers on Earth. European settlement brought a wave of physical disturbance, the extirpation and introduction of species, the interruption of natural processes, and hydrological alteration. Wetlands were ditched, tiled and filled; streams were choked with silt, straightened, diked and dammed; natural communities and their hydrological functions (soil binding, evapotranspiration, water retention and groundwater recharge) were altered.   In addition to being a recognized leader in the management of terrestrial natural communities, Driftless Land Stewardship LLC has decades of experience managing our landscape’s wetlamd and riparian systems.
More Info