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Illinois Outdoors

Save gas, wildlife: Don’t mow

June 04, 2008 at 10:33 AM

There is one simple way to save gas, money and wildlife.

Delay mowing your road-side ditches. If ever there’s a year for landowners to hold off on road-side mowing, this would seem to be it, what with rising gas prices.

But we’ll see. No doubt the mowers will start firing up in earnest later this month. That’s a shame. Because in addition to saving money, delaying mowing until after Aug. 1 provides benefits to pheasants, quail, rabbits, mallards and songbirds such as meadowlarks, dickcissels and grasshopper sparrows. 

Mowing earlier in the summer can destroy nests and young birds and animals, as well as the adults that may be tending the nests.

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources operates a number of programs to establish and maintain grassland areas for wildlife on rights-of-way and private land. Contact the IDNR         Division of Wildlife Resources at (217) 782-6384 for more information.

Your CommentsComments :: Terms :: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

i think its weird to see farmers mowing ditches and roadsides in the middle of summer anyways. it’s almost like they need to be out working so they just find something to do. my dad and grandfather were the same way. let the grass grow people!!!!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 06/04 at 07:35 PM

I mow the road edges, but not the whole ditch.  I agree that some farmers go overboard and think the ditches and waterways need to look like manicured lawns.

I’ve noticed the DOT around here, up until this year, has mowed strips along the edge of the pavement on the interstates and left the bulk of the median and ditches in tall grass in the past few years, too.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 06/05 at 07:00 AM

Amen, let the grass grow.  Seem like a good way to save some fuel and some of the critters that live next to the road.  I quit mowing and have turned alot of my previously mowed ground into prarie. Remember though, we have a governor who just does illogical things, he probably has a bud that the state buys fuel from.  So he will probably want the roadsides mowed.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 06/05 at 10:31 PM

everyone here is stupid. mow the ditches road to field 3 times per year even if gas is $12.00 per gallon. Up buy where I live, just south of Chicago, the farmers are moving out and all the land is rented to someone else and the ditches don’t get mowed, trees grow up and look like hell. Keep your property looking nice, take pride in your land and your community and mow your ditch. Nothing uglier than trees growing in a ditch and making driving dangerous by blocking views on corners.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 07/09 at 09:27 PM

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