Great Salt Lake Nature Center

Standard Hours of Operation Are:

Monday-Thursday

7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.

UNLESS STAFF CALLED OFF-SITE FOR OUTREACH EDUCATION PRESENTATIONS AND PROJECTS

 

 

Peregrine Falcon
James McIntyre, 2001
Red Fox
James McIntyre, 2002
Black-Crowned Night Heron
James McIntyre, 2000


The Great Salt Lake is one of Utah's most significant and least appreciated resources. Encompassing approximately 1,500 square miles, this vast remnant of ancient Lake Bonneville is known the world over for its heavy salt content, stunning sunsets, and beautiful mountain vistas. Beyond the scenery and the occasional float in the lake, however, few Utahns understand the unique contribution the lake's ecosystem makes to quality of life along Utah's heavily populated Wasatch Front.

Consider these facts:

WETLANDS
Seventy-five percent of all the wetlands in Utah are located on the shore of the Great Salt Lake. These wetlands store seasonal floodwaters, purify polluted runoff water, stabilize shorelines, and nurture a multitude of plant and animal species.

WATER BIRDS
The wetlands surrounding the Lake constitute some of the most significant migratory bird habitats in the Western Hemisphere. Between two and three million shorebirds make a crucial stop at the Great Salt Lake each year to prepare for their long journeys south. Visiting species include the world's largest concentration of Wilson's Phalaropes and Snowy Plovers.

RAPTORS
The Great Salt Lake is prime habitat for several raptor species of bird, including Northern Harriers, Peregrine Falcons, and Bald Eagles. In fact, approximately 500 Bald Eagles winter on these shores, making the Great Salt Lake one of the Top 10 winter habitats for bald eagles in the continental United States.

RESOURCE EXTRACTION
Five different companies extract approximately 1.6 million tons of minerals each year from the Great Salt Lake, valued at over $150 million. Simultaneously up to 20 million pounds of brine shrimp eggs are harvested and sold to prawn farmers overseas, adding as much as $150 million annually to Utah's economy.

 

Life on Utah's Wasatch Front would be remarkably different and qualitatively diminished without a healthy Great Salt Lake Ecosystem—yet, with every passing year, this unique resource comes increasingly under threat. The Great Salt Lake Nature Center is dedicated to educating people everywhere as to the importance of this important and fragile ecosystem. With learning comes wisdom—and a better way to understand and appreciate the environment in which we live.


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