What is the IKC?

The Indiana Karst Conservancy is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation and conservation of Indiana's unique karst features. The IKC was formed by concerned individuals when it became apparent that no similar group was actively protecting such features for their inherent geological, biological, and historical importance.

The purposes of the IKC are the management, protection, and acquisition of the karst areas in southern Indiana. The IKC also supports research and promotes education related to karst and its appropriate use. Many of today's abuses in karst areas arise from lack of understanding and knowledge.

To advance these goals, the IKC sponsors or participates in a number of activities. The IKC:

  • organized and hosted the 1995 National Cave Management Symposium at Spring Mill State Park.
  • with the Indiana Cave Survey, sponsors the Indiana Cave Symposium; an opportunity for local cavers to share their projects with others.
  • maintains cooperative relationships with several state and federal agencies; influencing management plans and decision-making for Indiana karst on public lands.
  • participates in a biennial census of the federally-endangered Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis). Temperature monitoring devices are installed in the larger Indiana bat hibernacula to correlate temperatures to populations.
  • manages caves containing the threatened troglobitic species such as blind fish, crayfish and the Indiana bat. Populations are monitored on a periodic basis.
  • sponsors Under-Earth Day, an annual cleanup/workday on one of our nature preserves.
  • reprints scholarly and historical publications relating to caves and karst in Indiana.
  • provides, free of charge, karst-related slide presentations and question-and-answer sessions for interested groups.

  • engages in cave and mine gating projects, where absolutely necessary. Gates are designed to avoid restricting the passage of air, cave life and organic matter.
  • responds to industrial or residential developments or other activities that may endanger caves.

These are only examples of the work the IKC has pursued since 1986. We're very proud of our history, and the grassroots activism of our membership remains our strength.