Buchanan County, Iowa

Growing, but not outgrowing our values.


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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 cares for 40 properties, and features an award-winning Environmental Education Program.  The Conservation Board's mission is to "improve quality or 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.

Online reservations for cabins, campsites, and shelters will be taken through the new online reservation system NOW.  Click here to start making a reservation online!  In The Otter Creek Quarterly, Winter 2017-2018, find more information about the online reservation system by clicking here

Preparing Wild Game
Wednesday, January 24th, 6:30 p.m.

Fontana Nature Center Classroom
Cost: $5 per person


Are your wild game dishes lacking in variety or not as tasty as you would like? Mike Flaucher of Independence will share some of his secrets to great tasting wild game: How to get rid of the “gamey” taste, how to prepare and store your meat, and other tricks. Get hands-on as you make a marinade to take home and try on your own game.  Please preregister by calling (319) 636-2617 or by clicking here.

 Moonlit Snowshoe
Wednesday January 31st, 6 p.m.
Crumbacher Wildlife Area
Cost: $5 per person or $15 per family


Strap on a pair of snowshoes and explore the beauty of a winter evening at the Crumbacher Wildlife Area southwest of Independence.  Participants will meet in the  Southeast parking lot on 250th St.  If the sky is clear, the full moon will light our way.  No prior snowshoeing experience is necessary.  All ages are welcome.  Please be sure to preregister by callin (319) 636-2617 or clicking here.

MONARCHS MONARCHS MONARCHS Click here to learn about plants for Monarchs

Donate to education programs, exhibits, and facilities in Buchanan County by supporting the Friends of Fontana Park!

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

Please click here to learn more about Friends of Fontana Park and how you can become involved!

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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.