SC Conservation Board and Pheasants Forever create new habitat area
SHELBY COUNTY — In 2021 the Lila Rickel family approached the Shelby County Conservation Board (SCCB) with an interest in selling approximately thirteen acres of land in Shelby County. This parcel of land is located on the east side of Highway 59 across the Nishnabotna River and west of the Nishna Bend Recreation Area. Jeff Schmitz of Nishna Land Services, Inc. was the farm manager over the property, and with his assistance a nominal sale price was negotiated in exchange for naming rights.
The land is enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) pollinator habitat, so it was a natural choice for SCCB to partner with Pheasants Forever (PF). The statewide PF organization reached out to local chapters and the Shelby and Monona County chapters agreed to become 50% partners for the land purchase. The area will continue to be a natural habitat area with public hunting allowed.
The Rickel family owned the land, and it has a rich history in Shelby County dating back to the late 1880s. The family chose the name Hammerand Bend Habitat Area as their family lineage dates to the Hammerand surname when the family started a blacksmith business in Portsmouth and Harlan.