Hosting Peregrine Falcons
MidAmerican Energy facilities serve as hosts to peregrine falcons, a species on the threatened and endangered lists of Iowa, Illinois and South Dakota.
In 2005, a pair of falcons hatched four chicks in a nest box built for them on the stack of the Louisa Generating Station in Muscatine, Iowa. At the same time, two adult falcons called the Davenport, Iowa, office building home.
Over the years, more than 50 employees have volunteered their time to build or install boxes, feed chicks, provide water or rescue chicks that are just learning to fly. MidAmerican Energy works with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, the Iowa Falconer's Association and the Macbride Raptor Project to band the chicks so their progress can be monitored as they grow. More than 40 chicks have been successfully raised at MidAmerican Energy facilities and returned to the wild.
Iowa Habitat Preservation
MidAmerican Energy set aside 420 acres for an environmental preserve during the development of the Louisa Generating Station in Muscatine, Iowa. Since that time, Monsanto, an industrial neighbor, has added an additional 90 acres. Together, this area is known as the Big Sand Mound Nature Preserve.
MidAmerican Energy and Monsanto work together to maintain the natural state of the 510-acre preserve. The site is a diverse ecosystem of plants and animals, rolling sandy hills, open prairie, woodlands and shallow ponds. More than 600 different plants have been identified on the site and, due to available habitat, a wide variety of unusual animals flourish.
Restoring Prairie Grasslands
In the early 1970s, a MidAmerican Energy predecessor company purchased 3,600 acres of land in Jasper County, near Prairie City, Iowa. In the '80s, Iowa Congressman Neal Smith was promoting the idea of a wildlife refuge and prairie restoration project in central Iowa. MidAmerican Energy made the company's site near Prairie City available, and joined with area conservation leaders, Congressman Smith and the U.S. Department of the Interior to secure the property and establish the refuge. Congress formally approved the establishment of the Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge in 1990. To learn more about the Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge, visit www.tallgrass.org.