More than a quarter century ago, The Nature Conservancy embarked on a mission to permanently conserve a significant piece of Oklahoma’s Tallgrass Prairie Preserve. Today, the Joseph H. Williams Tallgrass Prairie Preserve at nearly 40,000 acres is the largest protected piece of tallgrass prairie left on earth.
This once expansive landscape area was hunting ground for tribes such as the Wichita, Osage, and Kaw. Originally spanning across 14 states from Texas to Minnesota – TNC used a combination of free-ranging bison and a “patch-burn model” approach to prescribed burning to restore the ecosystem. Today, the area offers a series of hiking trails and nature vistas, as well as a nearly 10-mile gravel loop that encircles much of the prairie.
TNC Tallgrass Prairies Featured in 2 Major Films
This October, TNC tallgrass prairies will be featured as stunning backdrops for two major films: Martin Scorsese's Killers of the Flower Moon and Ken Burns' documentary The American Buffalo.
Teeming With Diversity
The Tallgrass Prairie Preserve is a haven for wildlife because of its variety of natural habitats. The diversity of grassland and forest is home to more than 300 species of birds and more than 700 plant species. Other wildlife includes white-tailed deer, bobcats, armadillos, beavers, woodchucks, badgers, coyotes and more.
The main attraction though are the more than 1,800 American bison that make up one of the largest herds in the country. Bison are rounded up each fall and cattle are grazed on 11,000 acres.
Partnering to Preserve the Prairie
Since 2020, TNC and Sunday have been working together to preserve this natural habitat and introduce the beauty and benefits of the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve to future generations. Sunday offers consumers customizable lawn care solutions that are better for people, pets and the planet.