Funded Project

2023| Vermillion River Watershed


Applicant Organization: Friend of the Mississippi River

Contact: Alex Roth



This unique project combines on-the-ground habitat restoration with landowner outreach and education to create tangible upland and in-stream habitat benefits. All while engaging the Vermillion River community about the importance of conservation and habitat restoration for water quality and healthy fish populations.

The Vermillion River is a state-designated trout stream located in the Twin Cities metro area of Minnesota. Altered by decades of human influence and land use change, the stream is slowly returning to a healthy waterway that supports self-sustaining populations of fish and other wildlife. However, the stream still exists in an agriculturally-dominated landscape, with runoff carrying sediment and nutrients into the river, reducing water quality and degrading aquatic habitat. Meanwhile, upland natural areas along the river are dominated by invasive plant species, reducing habitat quality for insects and other wildlife.

Funding from Fishers & Farmers will support:

  • Removal of a monoculture of invasive smooth brome from 10-acres of fallow farmland along the
    Vermillion River.
  • Establishment of a diverse native prairie on 10-acres of upland habitat that will buffer the Vermillion River
    from active agriculture.
  • Establishment of a 30-species mixture of native grasses and wildflowers on 10-acres.
  • Removal of invasive woody plants from 7-acre of riparian woodland along the Vermillion River.
  • Establishment of 5 species of native shrubs and 10 species of native wildflowers to improve insect
    (pollinator) and wildlife habitat along the river.
  • Implementation of 10 pollinator nodes within a monoculture of invasive reed canary grass on 11-acres of wetland/floodplain along the Vermillion River.
  • Outreach to 25 farmer-landowners along the Vermillion River
  • Planning of one field day for interested landowners