Grasslands Beneficial Management Practices > Beneficial Management Practices > Sustainable Economic Management > Added value products > Managing Your Native Prairie Parcels: Your Guide to Caring for Native Prairie in Saskatchewan

Managing Your Native Prairie Parcels: Your Guide to Caring for Native Prairie in Saskatchewan

Saskatchewan Wetland Conservation Corporation, Saskatchewan

Type Conservation Organization Publication
Organization Saskatchewan Wetland Conservation Corporation
Country Canada
Region Saskatchewan
Grass Type Mixed-grass prairie
Language English
Reference Moen, Jim. (1998). Managing Your Native Prairie Parcels:  Your Guides to Caring for Native Prairie in Saskatchewan. Saskatchewan Wetland Conservation Corporation. Saskatchewan.
Date modified May 2013

The Saskatchewan Wetland Conservation Corporation created this planning guide to help landowners learn about and manage native grasslands on their land, covering topics such as native grassland conservation and enhancement, economic diversification opportunities and tools for securing grassland conservation.

The guide argues that in order to manage grasslands for conservation it is necessary to restore natural disturbances such as grazing and fire, and to ensure the ecosystem receives some rest. One way of allowing rest periods for native pastures is planting perennial forage in other pastures to provide for grazing in spring and summer. The guide suggests the use of prescribed burning to maintain native grasslands, but cautions it may not be adequate for conservation management alone and it should be used in conjunction with other tools. They are also careful to note that the impact of fire cannot always be predicted.

The guide recognizes the threat of exotic and invasive species to North American grasslands, and describes unique strategies for fighting invasive species. These include the use of sheep and/or goats to keep invasive species such as leafy spurge and brome under control. By grazing in the spring when the invasive plants first emerge, these animals can help to prevent or contain their spread. These additional animals can be used to diversify income, either by renting the land to their owners for grazing, or for an additional product. The guide also suggests harvesting and marketing native seeds as an additional product. A commitment to conservation is encouraged either by designating future land use through a conservation easement, or by donating or selling the area to a conservation organization.