When I was in high school, my environmental science teacher had our class plant a prairie garden on campus. Inspired by the idea of ripping up sod and replacing it with the native plants that rightfully belonged there, I asked my parents if I could plant a prairie garden in our backyard. They said yes. […]

A line of fire blazes in an ocean of grass. The smell of burning bluestem wisps through the air. A man dressed in leather boots carefully tips a drip torch to spark a flame onto the landscape–a familiar sight by those who live on working landscapes in the Great Plains. In early spring, I photographed […]

A young child runs through the vast Nebraska prairie. Her fingers graze the grass gently, curiously. The prairie is her playground, as she dances wildly in Denton. Here, local conservation groups restore native prairie grass through a project called the Haines Branch Prairie Corridor.  The project will connect existing prairie in the Haines Branch tributary of Salt […]

  I first became interested in photography during my senior year of high school. For as long as I can remember I’ve been interested in the outdoors, and photography seemed like the perfect outlet to express that interest to others. My parents gifted me a point-and-shoot camera as a Christmas present, and I had slowly […]

I have always been drawn to the outdoors– be it hiking in the Rockies, fishing at a lake, or socializing with neighbors on warm summer nights. I feel my best when I’m outside. Although I have always enjoyed communing with nature, I never felt compelled to study plants and animals. However, since I have begun […]

Where Nebraska was once covered by grassland, most of the land is now used for agriculture. The loss of prairie causes problems for native species and on marginal land it can create issues with erosion and water quality. Conservationists are working to rebuild parts of the prairie in the Midwest.

It’s a foggy October morning at The Nature Conservancy’s Platte River Prairies, located in south central Nebraska.  I’m struggling to keep up with Mike Schrad as he treks through tall, shirt-soaking grasses in search of the Sherman live traps he placed the night before. Schrad picks up the first four of these small, aluminum boxes […]

On a beautiful August morning, the sun penetrated through the clouds and reflected off the mucky water as I trekked through a slough on Shoemaker Island, a wet meadow adjacent to the Platte River in central Nebraska. I followed staff and interns with the Crane Trust to check on small mammal traps that were placed […]

The barn is dusty. And cold. It’s winter at The Nature Conservancy’s (TNC) Platte River Prairies near Alda, Neb. Chris Helzer orients a group of staff and volunteers to the day’s task: mixing seed for grassland restoration.