DNR acquires 200 acres in western Minn. in $2M deal

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has finished a $2 million deal to acquire 200 acres of land on Dead Lake near Fergus Falls.

The DNR had been trying to acquire this land for years. Mike Halverson, DNR's land acquisition coordinator, said acquiring this land is a big win.

"This land has a lot of emergent vegetation, a lot of spawning and rearing habitat all around it, so it contributes significantly to the population of both fish and wildlife species in the lake," he said. "Conserving it is conserving wildlife."

The conservation organization, The Trust for Public Land, helped negotiate the purchase from the FDIC, because the land was foreclosed upon.

Bob McGillivray, senior project manager of The Trust for Public Land said a developer proposed more than 150 housing units on the property.

"If all these houses, this high density housing, had gone in and right next to the shoreline here, it would have had a very detrimental impact on the wildlife, and on the water, and on the water quality. This is a shallow bay," he said.

The property has more than three miles of shoreline. It's critical habitat for fish and wildlife, including rare species such as the bald eagle, colonial water bird, forster's tern, and pugnose shiner.

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