Build a Wildlife Area Week Highlight: South Dakota’s Kessler Game Production Area

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With the support of people like you and programs like Build a Wildlife Area, Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever have created over 204,000 acres of permanently protected and publicly accessible upland wildlife habitat. Now, through the ambitious goals of our Call of the Uplands® campaign, we aim to increase this total by nearly 40%.


This week we’re celebrating our past successes, sharing more about our ambitious goals and rallying to raise support for the Build a Wildlife Area program.

Welcome to Build a Wildlife Area Week!

The first project we’d like to highlight honors conservationist Tim Kessler by Permanently Conserving 440 Acres in South Dakota.

Through the support of members, donors, corporate partners, and federal and state partners, we were able to secure the 440 acres and ensure it is protected for wildlife forever. The property contains native prairie, wetlands, and marginal cropland that will be restored and managed for the benefit of upland wildlife and public access.

The Kessler Game Production Area is located just east of Pickerel Lake and is part of the Glacial Lakes Region that encompasses much of northeast South Dakota and stretches along the Coteau des Prairies hills. This expansive project is home to some of South Dakota’s most iconic species, including ring-necked pheasants, sharp-tailed grouse, and waterfowl, along with the endangered Dakota Skipper butterfly.

The State of South Dakota will manage the property long term through the Game, Fish and Parks (GFP) department as the new Kessler Game Production Area.

By donating to our Build a Wildlife Area program, you will ensure our organization is able to secure more properties like the new Kessler Game Production Area in South Dakota.