Stewardship

It’s what we practice and share to protect our area’s land and water.

Youth Activities

Because it’s never too early to create a love of nature.

Water Quality Research

Measuring the effectiveness of stewardship practices.

Connecting with nature.

Low-impact recreation supports our region’s economy and health.

T-shirt with image of Kickapoo watershed on the frontConnect to Protect Your Watershed!

Take a look at our new Valley Stewardship Network T-shirts!

We’re encouraging everyone to get to know their own watershed and all the plants and animals that are a part of it.

We have T-shirts for the Kickapoo, Bad Axe, Tainter Creek, Coon Creek, and West Fork of the Kickapoo watersheds.

Don’t know which watershed you’re in?  Try finding yourself on this map, or contact us at info@valleystewardshipnetwork.org.

Statement by the Board of 

Valley Stewardship Network

Regarding Wild Rose Dairy

Not all farmers are the same. Most are conscious stewards, and VSN wants nothing more than to continue working respectfully with them in their diverse stewardship efforts. However, as a local watershed group that has been in existence for 20 years now and is chartered to protect and educate in the greater Kickapoo watershed, we here record our informed concerns regarding the real threats to both the Otter Creek and Weister Creek watersheds that the proposed expansion of Wild Rose Dairy presents.  Not only does Wild Rose have a history of expired permits and non-compliance, but they have been involved in two fish-killing manure spills in the last three years. Perched as they are on a karstic ridgetop and proposing to store, pump, and haul 23,000,000 gallons of liquid manure annually, we feel this expansion poses an undue risk to both our surface and groundwater resources … which, are one and the same in karst country.

Respectfully,

Board of Directors, Valley Stewardship Network

Benefits of Membership at

Valley Stewardship Network

Fall colors on stream

Why VSN? Benefits of membership include:

  • Contributing to healthy soil and clean water in the Driftless region of southwest WI
  • Helping to build a resilient community
  • Attending educational events & workshops
  • Receiving updates on the latest watershed happenings
  • Access to regular publications of impactful happenings in the area

Contact us about becoming a member at info@valleystewardshipnetwork.org or click on the Join Us button above!

Recommended Reading

Book list heading

Perhaps you are spending more time at home these days.  With the coldness of winter approaching, we offer you some recommended reading to enjoy while you curl up on your couch with coffee and a blanket!

  • Silent Spring – Rachel Carson
  • Hidden in the 13th Moon – Marcia Halligan
  • Brigadoon Creek – Len Harris
  • The Stream of Time – Len Harris
  • Time to Change: Grazing – Genetics – Management – Chip Hines
  • Tales of Mother Crane and the Flying Puppet Show – Robert H. Horwich
  • The Farmer as Conservationist – Aldo Leopold
  • A Sand County Almanac – Aldo Leopold
  • The Land Remembers: The Story of a Farm and Its People – Ben Logan
  • Rambunctious Garden: Saving Nature in a Post-Wild World – Emma Marris
  • Defending Beef: The Case for Sustainable Meat Production – Nicolette Hahn Niman
  • Holistic Management: A Commonsense Revolution to Restore Our Environment – Allan Savory and Jody Butterfield
  • Bringing Nature Home: How You Can Sustain Wildlife with Native Plants – Douglas W. Tallamy
  • Nature’s Best Hope: A New Approach to Conservation that Starts in Your Yard – Douglas W. Tallamy
  • Revolution on the Range: The Rise of a New Ranch in the American West – Courtney White
Quote in support of VSN membership
Quote in support of VSN membership
Quote in support of VSN membership
Why VSN member quote Cyndy
Why be a VSN member quote

Thinking of You – from VSN

Dear VSN Members,

I hope you are well and safe at home. As we manage these challenging times together with grit and grace, the amazing resiliency and self-sufficiency of our region’s communities and ecosystems are being highlighted. At Valley Stewardship Network, we cannot help but feel grateful that comfort and respite are available to us all by connecting with nature.

The VSN staff is working from home, and we are available every day by email. Our staff is creative, self-directed, and adept at adjusting to working online. We are updating resource guides, creating GIS maps, developing whole farm stewardship and cover crop plans, developing outreach activities, and planning research studies.

 

We encourage everyone to stay home, stay well, and stay connected with nature as we navigate this uncharted territory as a community. We at Valley Stewardship Network are looking forward to getting together with our community when it is once again safe to do so.  In the meantime, I want to share my favorite Wendell Berry poem with you all.

The Peace of Wild Things

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

© Wendell Berry. This poem is excerpted from The Selected Poems of Wendell Berry

Shelly Gradwell-Brenneman, Director, Valley Stewardship Network – On behalf of the entire Board and Staff of Valley Stewardship Network

Explore your watershed

 For maps of specific land parcels, contact us about custom GIS mapping services.