conservation board
Tama County Conservation

Tama County Conservation
2283 Park Road
Toledo, IA 52342
Telephone and FAX: (641) 484-2231

Nature Center

The Nature Center has been built entirely through
non-property tax revenue sources such as grants, donations and fundraisers.

Diorama Stream

A diorama is a three-dimensional miniature or life-size scene in which figures, stuffed wildlife, or other objects are arranged in a naturalistic setting against a painted background.

Diorama - Completed

animal huntingThe Tama County Nature Center is located at beautiful Otter Creek Lake and Park in central Tama County. The 5,600 sq. ft. facility is a popular experiential center serving as the primary location for environmental education activities of the Conservation Board and provides a top quality display room to inspire visitors. The facility has been made possible through use of non-property tax revenues including grants, donations and fundraisers.

The display room reached completion on July 1, 2016, and provides visitors with many enlightening and inspiring displays. You will be able to view a beautiful Trumpeter Swan mount with a wrap around mural of habitat spanning from pre-settlement to modern day. Learn about water quality and the importance of mussels. Be enthralled by the beautiful monarch butterfly and the challenges facing the species which has declined by 80% in recent years. Visitors will be able to locate towns and farmsteads on a large image of the county and finally children will be challenged by a fun and educational discovery wall. The key component of the display room is a wrap around diorama showcasing riparian habitats in the county and the species of plants and animals that live there.

A professional Naturalist/Park Ranger is available to help plan and host field trips to Otter Creek Lake and Park and is working with local school districts to help enrich their STEM programs.

The Exhibit Team members serving during planning and fabrication of the exhibits were: Chelsea- Josh Van Hamme, Dysart- David Hill, Cathy Wieck, Gladbrook- Geri Eilers, Montour- Melody Bro, Tama- George Corum, Ginny Elliott, Toledo- Dennis Appelgate, Bob Etzel, Jim Little, Denise Fletcher, and Traer- Yvette Berner, Judy Krebsbach. These individuals have graciously donated their time and talents to assure a quality display component of the Nature Center will be available to Tama County residents and guests.

While the facility is being used for environmental education activities of the board it may also be rented to serve as host site for private events such as training workshops, banquets, weddings and receptions. 

There are restrictive policies in place regarding use of the Nature Center. A brief overview of use of the Nature Center is outlined in the "Can We Use the Nature Center" brochure or you can download the text version here.


To download, right click on download link and 'save target as'
Can We Use the Nature Center brochure or you can download the text version here

Please tour the rest of the Conservation area below:
Facilities - Fees - Rules - Nature Center
- Links
Map to Otter Creek Lake and Park

Under pertinent federal regulations prohibiting discrimination on the basis of age, race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, genetic information or disability the Tama County Conservation Board strives to provide quality programs of environmental education and outdoor recreation for all persons. If you feel that you have been discriminated against in any program, activity, or facility operated by the Tama County Conservation Board you should write to: Director, Tama County Conservation Board, 2283 Park Road, Toledo, IA 52342, or the Equal Opportunity Commission, U.S. Dept. of Interior, Washington, D.C. 20240.

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