Robart Family and Wind Power Protect Sandstone Prairie

Bob Robart grew up in Norfolk, Nebraska in the 1960’s with a multitude of hunting and fishing opportunities.  “I retained that focus through a move to Lincoln for college and a decision to remain there to raise a family with my wife Cheryl,” he explains.  That focus led to the purchase of land near Unadilla in the 1980’s, where the Robarts developed a commitment to conservation and enhancement  of wildlife habitat.

Primarily because of population encroachment, this land was sold in 2010 but the desire to make a difference was still strong and the following year Bob and Cheryl had an opportunity to buy a tallgrass prairie in Jefferson County.  It is in a unique part of Nebraska called the “Sandstone Prairies” region, because a shallow underlying shelf of sandstone made it problematic to plow so much of the area has been utilized for grazing and thereby maintained as prairie.

In early 2014, Bob and Cheryl said “It became evident that our lifelong commitment to conservation could be enhanced by placing a conservation easement on this beautiful piece of original tallgrass prairie.”

Conservation of the prairie was also made possible by funding from the Steele Flats Wind Project, cooperation from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Nebraska Game & Parks Commission, and the Nebraska Land Trust.  As a result, an all-too-rare piece of Nebraska’s vanishing prairie heritage  is now forever protected.