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Protecting a federally endangered species in central Wisconsin
The Karner blue butterfly is a federally endangered species. It has a high regard for the open sunny areas and sandy soils found on land near Alliant Energy equipment throughout central Wisconsin.
That's because those conditions encourage the growth of wild lupine, the sole food source for the Karner blue’s larvae. An adult butterfly is about the size of a postage stamp, so they aren’t equipped to fly far to find new homes or food sources.
As a partner in the Habitat Conservation Plan for the Karner blue butterfly, we are actively restoring and preserving a suitable habitat for the butterfly on the land we manage.
The agreement allows Wisconsin land owners like Alliant Energy to continue operating in and around Karner blue butterfly habitat, provided that we modify our activities to minimize “incidental take” (death, harm or harassment) of the endangered butterfly.
Our employees conduct wild lupine and butterfly surveys each year. They focus on areas where line clearance or construction projects are scheduled. Training prepares our field crews to protect butterfly habitat by minimizing activities that might have an adverse impact.
In areas where wild lupine is established, we make every effort to limit our field activities during the Karner blue’s flight season and to have minimal impact to wild lupine plants.
Visit these sites to learn more about the Karner blue butterfly: