Kellerton Hosting Upcoming Prairie Chicken Festival

The Kellerton Grasslands Bird Conservation Area will be hosting their annual Prairie Chicken Festival on Saturday, April 6th. The festival will be held at the Kellerton viewing platform, two miles west and one mile south of Kellerton. There will be ample parking and the viewing platform is accessible for those with limited mobility.

Viewing will begin before dawn and last until the birds diminish their courtship dancing and booming, around 8 a.m.

Iowa began reintroducing prairie chickens in the 1980s, then released additional wild birds captured in western Nebraska from 2012-17, to supplement the population and add genetic diversity. To date, the population is holding steady, but at fairly low numbers.

During the festival the DNR will be onsite to help put spotting scopes on birds and to answer questions. There are about 65 to 70 birds estimated in the conservation area. The number is considered low, but stable.

If you can’t make it on April 6th, the chickens will be displaying likely through the end of the month. Dusk is also a good time to view the birds because the sun is in the west, though the birds may be a little less active.

Kellerton is one of the premier grasslands in the state for prairie chickens and other grassland birds.