General Nature of the Survey Area

Otter Tail County is in west-central Minnesota. It has a total area of  about 2,232 square miles, or about 1,423,300 acres. The total land area  is about 1,190,100 acres. The total area of water in the county is about  233,200 acres (USDA, 1984). Fergus Falls, the county seat, is in the  southwestern part of the county. In 1990, the population of Otter Tail  County was 50,714.

Minnesota Map
The agricultural enterprises in the county are mainly dairy farming, cash crops, and livestock and poultry operations. A significant part of the county’s economy involves tourism, sport fishing, and recreational uses associated with the many lakes and rivers.

Most of the light industrial products manufactured in the county are related to agriculture or recreation. Some forest management and harvesting produces saw logs, pulpwood, and Christmas trees.

This survey updates an incomplete farm tract soil mapping project for Otter Tail County. It includes mapping of previously unmapped areas and updates the interpretations for the soil types in the county. Soil scientists were denied access to a few tracts in the county. These areas are indicated by a dashed line around the tract. Soil scientists mapped these areas using knowledge from the surrounding areas, older soil maps, and photo interpretation of aerial photographs. The descriptions and map unit delineations of the soils on these tracts may be less accurate than those in areas where the soil scientists had access and could carefully examine the soils. 

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