Nachusa Grasslands has been mowing brush for three decades. Below is a brush mower in 2003 mowing primarily elm trees that had been encroaching the wet meadow. The background photo is the unit currently, handsome and diverse.
Brush mowing slash looks ugly but is temporary. Within a year the slash was hard to find on the ground. Mowing opens the habitat to sunlight, and prescribed fire keeps it open.
We do this work to create healthy diverse habitat for all sorts of species.
Meet the brush mowing operators
On the left is Bill Kleiman whose day job is running Nachusa Grasslands the last 28 years. Bill is a director with the Illinois Prescribed Fire Council, and has been a burn boss on over 400 fires. He co-leads the Grassland Restoration Network publishing a blog for them. Bill serves as a volunteer with the Middle Rock Conservation Partners. He has received recognition from the Natural Areas Association and the Society of Ecological Restoration.
On the right is Damian Considine, longtime volunteer supporting many natural areas in the region. Damian had a career with the Department of Transportation in Lee County. He is the Volunteer Hunting Coordinator for Dixon Park District and competes in archery.
Bill and Damian were volunteers on this project, with Middle Rock Conservation Partners the owners of the 200 horsepower brush mower.
Most photos by Bill Kleiman with handsome photos by Charles Larry and others.