The AOK Sanctuaries Initiative

Connecting children and everyone to Nature and Land

AOK is an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit statewide organization with members and activities in Kansas and Nebraska. AOK is currently developing an archipelago of sanctuaries through donations of land that owners want to preserve as a personal or family legacy. The program started when Harold and Lucille Hutton donated their 5000-acre ranch to AOK. They have passed away, but their land will be managed in perpetuity as the Hutton Niobrara Ranch Wildlife Sanctuary. Next, Salina attorney Connie Achterberg donated her childhood farm to AOK, while detailing her preferred management plans and retaining a “life estate” (described below). She too has now passed away, but her 240-acre property will be managed forever as the Connie Achterberg Wildlife-Friendly Demonstration Farm. In addition, the Kansas Historical Society transferred ownership of its Mt. Mitchell property to AOK; AOK augmented the original 32-acre parcel with the purchase of 15 additional acres. In combination, the two parcels are a part of the AOK sanctuary system as the Mt. Mitchell Prairie Heritage Preserve/ historical park. Three other properties (described in the pages that follow) are in the sanctuaries pipeline, while AOK regularly responds to landowner inquiries regarding other possibilities.

Preservation and partnership work when AOK and landowners determine that their priorities are in harmony.

Preserve Your Land as You Wish

There are many ways you can work with Audubon of Kansas (AOK) to ensure that your land is managed in perpetuity to benefit biodiversity, preserve natural habitat, reflect family history, and maintain the characteristics of a wildlife-friendly working farm, ranch, or other property. Our brochure, titled "Your Land, Your Legacy", details how you can preserve your land.

Download Brochure
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