Buchanan County Conservation

The Conservation Board offices are located at Fontana Park Interpretive Nature Center.  Buchanan County Conservation Board provides parks, prairies, woodlands, wetlands, and river accesses for both people and wildlife. The Conservation Board manages 41 properties, and features an award-winning Environmental Education Program.  The Conservation Board's mission is to "improve quality of life through programs of conservation and education."

Enjoy Buchanan County rivers

Nature Center display floor hours are:
Monday - Tuesday 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Wednesday - Friday 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Weekends April 1st - October 3 1st 1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Weekends November 1st - April 1st 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Nature Center can open by appointment by calling (319) 636-2617
Winter: Nature Center may be closed if travel conditions are "Not Advised," please call in advance (319) 636-2617.

Upcoming Public Programs

OWLS - Birding 101
Monday, December 17, 10 AM
Fontana Park Nature Center 
Preregistration is required 

Join a naturalist and experience bird life and bird identification in Fontana Park during this featured program for "Older, Wiser, Livelier Souls" (OWLS).   OWLS is a program specifically designed for adults to learn and explore nature in and around Buchanan County. Several programs are offered each quarter. Be sure to bring your binoculars (there will be some available too) because there will be plenty of time to watch the birds. There will be many great winter birds that will be viewable. Starting at the nature center then making our way over to the woodland trail we will encounter cardinals, blue jays, and downy woodpeckers. Click here to get preregistered.

New Year's Woodland Walks
Tuesday, January 1, 10:30 AM 
Guy Grover Timber  Register here
Tuesday January 1, 1 PM
Cedar Rock State Park Register here

Start off the first day of 2019 with a guided walk through Guy Grover Timber and Tree Plantings.  The rolling landscape along the Wapsipinicon River Corridor provides a great nature experience in this wonderful resource located near Quasqueton.  Following the Grover walk, participants can grab a lunch in Quasqueton (or bring their own), and then head to nearby Cedar Rock State Park at 1 p.m. for another walk.   Participants need to be sure to register for each walk online.

OWLS - UNI Botanical Center
Monday, January 7, 10 AM
University of Northern Iowa Botanical Center
Preregistration is required 

Join a naturalist and enjoy the beauty of the UNI Botanical Center.  Billie Hemmer, Preserves Manager, will provide a group tour of the center.  This is a great opportunity to get into a nice tropical environment without having to leave Iowa.  Those interested in carpooling will meet at Fontana at 9 a.m. There will be limited seating in the county van, for those who register quickly.  Please note if you would like to ride in the van while registering online.  Click here to get preregistered.

Winter Open House

Saturday, January 12, 1 PM
Fontana Nature Center
Preregistration is required 

Tired of being stuck inside the house?  Come out to Fontana and enjoy an afternoon exploring, building a fire, and cooking.  There will be a snowshoe hike through the Fontana Woodland trails, followed by a fire building activity and delicious desserts.  No prior snowshoeing experience is necessary.  Be sure to preregister because there are a limited number of snowshoes available.    Click here to get preregistered.


MONARCHS MONARCHS MONARCHS Click here to learn about plants for Monarchs

Friends of Fontana Park

The Friends of Fontana Park (FFP) is a non-profit organization whose purpose is to help fund the Buchanan County Conservation Board's environmental education programs.  The FFP provides most of the material costs for the wildlife display, nature center exhibits, quarterly newsletters, and some of the many educational programs and exhibits offered at Fontana and other Buchanan County parks. For more information on Friends of Fontana Park and how you can contribute to this 501c3 organization, click here.

Roughly half of Iowa’s rivers, lakes, and streams fail to meet water quality standards
Less than 10 percent of Iowa’s wetlands – natural spaces that help prevent flooding and provide habitat for wildlife – remain, amounting to a loss of 5 million acres of wetlands
• Over the last two decades, Iowa has lost more than 1.6 million acres of habitat suitable for pheasants and other small game
• Iowa loses an average of 5 tons per acre of soil, our major economic engine, each year to erosion
Click here to learn about Fund the Natural Resources and Outdoor Recreation Trust Fund

Find us on:

 Would you like to find out more about wildlife, county programs, Iowa fishing reports and more? Please email dcohen@co.buchanan.ia.us to be placed on the Conservation List serve. You will receive approximately 2-3 emails a week about conservation programs in Iowa.