About Clay County

Clay County first achieved Bird Friendly County status in 2021.

Clay County citizens are proud of the fact that their county holds portions of both Dewey’s Pasture and Waterman Creek Bird Conservation Areas. Diverse habitats, from prairie pothole marshes, lakes and associated uplands, like Dan Green Slough & Trumbull Lake, to woodlands, savannas, and the floodplain corridor of the Little Sioux River, support 312 species of birds (including 100 Species of Greatest Conservation Need). Few other Iowa counties have documented so many bird species. Clay County Conservation staff manages over 2,200 public wildlife acres that support much wildlife diversity, and private landowners are informed about how to best provide bird habitat for a variety of species. Clay County prohibits the use of lead shot on all public hunting areas, and education regarding the negative impacts of lead toxicity occurs during local Iowa Hunter Safety courses. County naturalists offered 490 environmental educational programs to 9,773 kids and 1,511 adults in 2020, including topics on birding, ornithology, bird identification, habitat needs, and environmental issues that impact bird populations; encouraging participants to assist with bird monitoring and create local area bird species checklists. Clay County annually hosts a “Wings and Wetlands” event that celebrates World Migratory Bird Day.