CHEYENNE BOTTOMS FIVE-YEAR PLAN OPEN FOR REVIEW
Public comments sought; comments accepted through April 2
GREAT BEND — A draft 2010-2014 Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area five-year management plan is now available for public review and comment. In 1990, the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks developed 25-year management plans for all public lands. In the case of Cheyenne Bottoms, public input was solicited at two public meetings, one in Great Bend and the other in Topeka. But in an effort to be more responsive to changing conditions and needs, five-year plans were adopted in 2005. This is the second such plan developed to manage this area, and public input is sought.
The primary management goal of Cheyenne Bottoms over the next five years, as in the past, is to provide diverse marsh habitat for waterfowl and shorebirds during their migratory periods. Two secondary goals are to provide public recreational opportunities to enjoy wildlife using the area — provided these activities do not conflict with the other management goals — and to increase production of waterfowl and shorebirds that nest on the area. Both the primary and secondary goals will enhance the management of threatened and endangered species and a wide variety of resident wildlife.
More specifically, the area's management plan does not address daily management activities but is intended to chart the general direction of property management for the next five years. Some of the issues include silt, water, vegetation, wildlife, and people management; inlet canal maintenance; and habitat diversity. Goals and strategies for each issue are presented in detail in the plan.
The current draft is available for review at the Kansas Wildlife and Parks website, www.kdwp.state.ks.us, under “Today's Links” or from the Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area page in “Locations.” Comments will be accepted through April 2.
The 19,000-acre area in the middle of the Central Flyway is a haven for migrating birds and annually attracts hunters and bird watchers from across the country. By international agreement, it has been designated a Wetland of International Importance. For more information or to comment on the five-year plan, phone Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area at 620-793-3066.