County parks open under restrictions

The Ida County Conservation Board (ICCB) took steps to open county parks during its meeting May 7.
ICCB parks and trails are currently open to fishing, bow hunting, hiking and social distance recreating. All campgrounds were opened at a “Level One” status May 15.
Currently, only self-contained camping units will be permitted to camp. No tents without onboard restroom facilities will be permitted.
All restroom and rental facilities are closed to the public through the duration of the Level One status. Level One will persist as operation protocol for a minimum of two weeks and then the board will re-evaluate when to initiate a “Level Two” operation status. For more information, call the ICCB director at the provided phone number below.
During the ICCB meeting May 7, healthcare guidelines were implemented to maintain safety of all
meeting participants. To protect staff, volunteers, the public and program participants, ICCB has implemented a COVID-19 plan.
Due to the healthcare crisis, the board is adapting management strategies to the best potential. The board asks everyone to respect and listen to local and state healthcare officials.
The Ida County Conservation staff planted more than 80 trees this past month, thanks to the Ida County Pheasants Forever Chapter and the local NRCS office. The trees that were planted are a part of a couple different ecological initiatives in Moorehead Park.
White pines (a native Iowa species) and red pines were planted in the Iowa Audubon Society habitat area to aid overwintering bird species. White and red oaks were planted in an open grassy area to promote future food resource availability for wildlife in the fall.
Lastly, ICCB staff completed an understory oak planting in the oak savanna. These initiatives are guided by a priority to favor native species compositions. By favoring native species, with an emphasis on diversity, it will lead to improved ecosystem resilience within ICCB areas.
In other business
•The collective budget was reviewed and determined to be on track with the remainder of the year.
•ICCB would like to remind the public that harvesting wood from county parks is not permitted. Firewood generates a part of the board’s revenue, which the department is dependent on to provide public services.
•FEMA projects are still underway and will continue to be processed over the course of the 2020 summer.
•Comments or questions on the former topics are welcomed; please forward them by email: or by phone at 712-364-3300.
•The next ICCB meeting is June 4.