The Indiana Natural Resources Commission has approved a 342-acre nature preserve in the tallgrass prairie region of the state's northwest corner.
The commission approved the Conrad Station Nature Preserve in Newton County during its meeting Tuesday at Mounds State Park in Anderson.
The Department of Natural Resources says the site about 35 miles south of Gary is owned by The Nature Conservancy and consists primarily of a black oak savannah, sand prairie, and a high-quality prairie restoration. It connects with a large area that includes Willow Slough Fish & Wildlife Area, Beaver Lake Nature Preserve and The Nature Conservancy's 7,200-acre Kankakee Sands.
Conrad Station is the 252nd Indiana site to receive nature preserve status and was purchased in 1998 with assistance from the Indiana Heritage Trust program.