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Saline Wetlands Conservation Partnership

Eastern Saline Wetlands

Eastern Saline Wetlands were once estimated to be in excess of 20,000 acres. Now less than 4,000 acres remain and many of these are degraded. These wetlands form a regionally unique wetlands complex located in floodplain swales and depressions within the Salt Creek, Little Salt Creek, and Rock Creek drainages in Lancaster and southern Saunders counties in Nebraska.

In 2003, a group of state and local agencies joined forces to establish the Saline Wetlands Conservation Partnership which has established an implementation plan to address the preservation of this special land and the needs of the community. There must be cooperation between landowners, conservation interest and governmental agencies in order to continue to sustain the saline wetlands in Nebraska.

Visit the Wetlands

Saline wetland areas are open to the public. Conservation easements are privately owned and can only be accessed with permission of the landowner. Learn more about each wetland area by selecting the links to the right.

Come out and visit the saline wetlands. Fall and winter are great times to view birds and other wildlife. During these colder months the best time to visit is in the late morning or early afternoon while temperatures are mild. Look for animal tracks and signs of feeding. As a reminder, snow removal is limited in the saline wetland nature areas.

Come out and visit the saline wetlands.


One of the best known functions of wetlands is to provide a habitat for birds. Wetlands are important bird habitats, and birds use them for breeding, nesting, and rearing young. Birds also use wetlands as a source of drinking water and for feeding, resting, shelter, and social interactions. A favorite activity during spring for these areas is “Bird Watching.” Migrating birds and Shorebirds will stop at saline wetlands in Lancaster County during April and May to rest and eat before heading north to nest and raise their young. Learn more about important bird areas and view the Bird Survey Data.

As summer approaches, the saline wetlands will begin to dry out. The colors of spring will fade and small animals and birds will be more difficult to find as they venture deeper into vegetated areas.

Download the Success in the Salt Marsh

Story and Photos by Michael Forsberg
NEBRASKAland Magazine, Aug/Sept 2018

Nebraska‘s Eastern Saline Wetlands projects in progress

Projects Updates:

Download PDF Nebraska's Eastern Saline Wetlands - Recorded bird species Updated fall 2017
  • This is periodically updated by Joel Jorgensen of the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission.
The Upper Little Salt Creek Saline Wetlands Plan
  • Completed December 2015 Download PDF Executive Summary
  • Identifies land management, rehabilitation and conservation goals for planning area
  • Field level and spatial data were collected to evaluate existing conditions of saline wetlands
  • Prior saline wetland rehabilitation projects were evaluated to determine successful applications and potential improvements
  • The plan provides Partnership a basis for future planning and project development
  • Final Design initiated in 2018
Download PDFDownload PDF Nebraska’s Eastern Saline Wetlands Conservation Plan 2018

Updated reports
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