The Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin awarded the 2021 C.D. Besadny Conservation Fund to 14 organizations across Wisconsin working to support grassroots conservation and education projects.

Established in 1990, the C.D. Besadny Conservation Fund supports conservation and education projects that benefit every part of Wisconsin—lands, waters, and wildlife—and connects Wisconsinites to natural resources through education and outreach.

Grants range from $500 to $2,000. This year’s awards totaling $20,839.13 will fund 14 different projects across Wisconsin.

The 2021 awardees are working on several projects throughout the state including: invasive species monitoring, habitat restoration, environmental education, and interpretive signage.

The organizations and a brief description of their projects are listed below.

North American Association for Environmental Education received a CD Besadny Grant in 2015. Conference participants use an iPad slideshow to walk through geologic time and a digital scavenger hunt to find geologic clues to Wisconsin’s “rocky” past at Devils Lake State Park in Baraboo, WI, during the “EE in the 21st Century—Where Nature Meets Technology” field trip. Photo by Althea Dotzour Photography.


Aldo Leopold Community School (Brown County)

Complete an engineering study of the school rooftop and add native plants and solar power.

Baird Creek Preservation Foundation (Brown County)

Provide water shoes to visiting students for exploring the local creek.

Conservation Dogs Collective, Inc. (Milwaukee County)

Train conservation dogs to detect the presence of invasive New Zealand mudsnails in Wisconsin water and sediment samples.

Douglas County Land and Water Conservation Department (Douglas County)

Organize an outreach and education campaign to prevent the spread of the invasive spiny water flea across multiple counties.

Driftless Area Land Conservancy (Iowa County)

Create a conservation programs and partners guide to aid landowners in conservation efforts.

Friends of Schlitz Audubon Nature Center (Milwaukee County)

Monitor for invasive mussel species with a group of community scientist volunteers.

Friends of the Blufflands (La Crosse County)

Restore prairie remnants to preserve and improve timber rattlesnake habitat.

Golden Sands Resource Conservation & Development Council (Portage County)

Teach educational programming about aquatic invasive species.

Holy Wisdom Monastery (Dane County)

Provide binoculars and field guides for youth and adult visitors to the grounds.

Navarino Nature Center (Shawano County)

Improve the accessibility of a nature trail.

North Lakeland Discovery Center (Vilas County)

Create interpretive signage, sensory activities, stories and programs along the Discovery Nature Trail.

Randolph Cambria-Friesland FFA (Columbia County)

Plant prairie wildflowers for pollinators.

River Bend Nature Center (Racine County)

Create six interpretive displays on the interpretive nature trail.

The Aldo Leopold Foundation (Sauk County)

Clear ground debris to seed a savanna near the headquarters.

Congratulations again to our grant recipients, and thank you for all you do for Wisconsin’s lands, waters, and wildlife!




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