South Mitchell Valley (Lazy J)
South Mitchell Valley is located on the south side of the North Platte River east of Mitchell, Nebraska. The area encompasses approximately 300 acres, about equally divided between farmland and old braided riparian river channels. There is over 3/4 of a mile of river frontage on the North Platte River. The area originally was part of the Historic Bay State Ranch. Since acquiring the property, 6,000 native shrubs were planted in rows and along the water drainage, and those shrubs developed to return over flow irrigation water from neighboring fields to the river. White tail deer, wild turkeys, pheasants and bobwhite quail can be found year-round on the property. Brown thrushes, meadowlarks, grasshopper sparrows and other prairie birds nest during season, and numerous waterfowl migrate through the area during the fall and winter months. Mink, muskrats, and river otters are frequently seen on the river banks. Russian olive plants and salt cedar have been removed from the property, which reduced grazing pressure to bring back some of the native shrubs and plants.