LINCOLN, Jan. 22, 2016 - The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has entered into an agreement with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, Pheasants Forever, Audubon Nebraska and others through the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) to help improve grazing land and habitat for grassland birds. The Grassland Bird Initiative will provide RCPP funding to 15 counties in south central and southeast Nebraska.
Producers in the Grassland Bird Initiative area (see map) originally had until mid-January to apply for this program, but the sign up for RCPP funding has been extended through Feb. 19, 2016. Producers should visit one of the NRCS offices located in the Initiative area to apply.
Through the Initiative, NRCS provides financial and technical assistance to farmers and ranchers to improve habitat for grassland birds including bobwhite quail and greater prairie-chicken. Eligible lands include cropland, rangeland, and pastureland.
Cost share of up to 75% is available to install management practices. Management practices eligible for financial assistance through this initiative include; payment for not grazing rangeland, prescribed fire, fencing materials and watering facilities for livestock, brush management, converting cropland to grassland bird habitat, grazing management, and more.