Hoffrogge Tract of the Verona State Wildlife Management Area is protected habitat, open to public hunting
A new 164-acre tract of land in Minnesota’s Brown County is now permanently protected wildlife habitat and open to public hunting and recreation thanks to Pheasants Forever and a grant recommended by the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council. The property has been turned over to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and officially dedicated as the Dennis and Mary Hoffrogge Tract of the Verona State Wildlife Management Area.
“It’s exactly the right way to do a 164-acre project like this,” said Jeremy Berg, Vice President of the Brown County Pheasants Forever chapter, a key project partner, “The Hoffrogges were willing sellers who approached us – the way it should be. It’s a great place for sportsmen.” Additional project partners included the Anoka County Pheasants Forever chapter, Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council, New Ulm Chapter of the Izaak Walton League, Lost Dog and Fox Hunters Club, Sleepy Eye Sportman’s Club, Nicollet Conservation Club, Darfur Sportsman’s Club, Sioux Trails Chapter of the Minnesota Deer Hunters Association, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
The parcel features a large prairie restoration, as well as a wetland restoration, with a good portion of the funding coming from the Outdoor Heritage Fund, which was created by Minnesota’s Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment. Dennis Frederickson, Southern Director for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, said projects like the Hoffrogge Tract are important to maintaining a “Minnesotan way of life.”
Like other Pheasants Forever projects accomplished in conjunction with funding from the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment, the Hoffrogge Tract shares the common goal of conserving wildlife habitat forever. “This is creating a legacy,” says Chad Bloom, Pheasants Forever’s Regional Representative in Southern Minnesota, “This is the type of project that we’ll look back on in 25 or 50 years and be very thankful we were able to conserve it.”
The Hoffrogge Tract is located approximately 10 miles southwest of Sleepy Eye, Minnesota (seven miles south on Highway 4, then about three miles west on County Road 22). It will be open to Minnesota pheasant hunters when the season opens on Saturday, October 13th.
Image courtesy Pheasants Forever