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Jeff LeClere, a herpetologist with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, holds an american racer snake his team trapped and tagged earlier in the morning Wednesday, Aug. 27, 2014. LeClere and his team are tracking various species of snakes near Kellogg to learn about the movement, habitat use and range of the reptiles in the state's first regional snake monitoring program. Credit: Alex Kolyer/For MPR News

Snakes in the grass: A key to Minnesota's vanishing prairie

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Kellogg, Minn. – In a sandy tract of grassland where the Zumbro River empties into the Mississippi, Jeff LeClere wades in waist-high grass.

The scientist's visit to Weaver Dunes, is the latest foray to the area where researchers have long studied turtles, falcons, bald eagles and other wildlife populations.

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