Buchanan County Conservation

 Iron Bridge Access Update Information
Dan Cohen, Executive Director
Buchanan County Conservation Board

Major changes are taking place at the Iron Bridge Access on the Wapsipinicon River between Independence and Quasqueton, making this key recreation area a state-recognized gateway to the Wapsipinicon River. 

Update 9/20/19

Update for the coming week:
The full parking lot and ramp remain rocked and open for public use.  Concrete is not expected to be poured during the coming week, but the rock is compacted and firm for driving and using the ramp.

Iron Bridge ramps_9_3_19
Progress as of 9/3/19

Update 8/29/19

Update for Labor Day Weekend:Workers plan to have the full parking lot rocked and open for public use.  The old ramp ramp was removed on Wednesday 8/28/19, however it will be rocked and ready to use for the weekend.  Have a fun and safe holiday weekend!

Iron Bridge update 8-28
Progress as of 8/28/19

  For more information about the Iron Bridge Access Project click here.

View from new bridge
View from new bridge of old access.

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 31st 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  

Monarch Tagging
Saturday, September 21, 1 pm
Location To Be Decided
  Cost: $4/person or $10/family
Register for Monarch Tagging here

Overwintering monarch population numbers were at a 11-year high of 6.05 hectares in 2018-19, and overwintering conditions were good and reproduction was successful as those migratory butterflies started back north to breed. There has been a strong population in NE Iowa throughout this summer and weather conditions were also good further north for breeding monarchs this summer. Another year of around 6 hectares is predicted for this winter in Mexico.
Monarch tagging is one way of monitoring butterfly numbers and tracking any shifts in the origins of monarchs that reach Mexico. Regional tagging success also helps demonstrate how monarchs respond to the physical conditions and quality of habitats in these areas. Thus, tagging is an important tool to understand the overall dynamics of the monarch population.
Join a naturalist during fall migration (at a location to be determined by blooming nectar flowers attractive to monarchs), to catch, tag and release these tiny travelers as research continues through the University of Kansas’ Monarch Watch program. Nets and tags will be provided. Those who pre-register will receive an email with the tagging location for September 21 by September 19.


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 to download a Friends of Fontana Park Donation Form.

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.  

Our office is located in Hazleton at 1883 125th St.
Phone:  (319)-636-2617
Fax:  (319)-636-2624
Email: bccbscheduling@gmail.com