St. Paul, Minn. -(Ammoland.com)- Landowners in Minnesota now have expanded opportunities to voluntarily enroll property in a popular Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) practice after the first of the year.
Thanks to a new allocation of CRP acres by the USDA’s Farm Service Agency, the State Acres for Wildlife Enhancement (SAFE) practice – Back Forty Pheasants – now has 50,000 acres available for enrollment to landowners interested in creating and conserving upland habitat for pheasants, quail and other grassland wildlife.
“CRP SAFE acres invest in quality habitat for grassland birds, the program is open for enrollment until allocations are reached, and the current rental rates are attractive,” stated Eran Sandquist, state coordinator for Pheasants Forever in Minnesota. And, if landowners have an expiring CRP contract, SAFE – or one of the other continuous CRP practices – is something they should strongly consider.”
Created nearly a decade ago, SAFE practices allowed states to design CRP practices that maintained the program’s hallmark soil and water conservation benefits while targeting specific wildlife species. Because of continued, and in some cases, rapid upland habitat loss, many states tailored their programs to benefit pheasants and quail.
The nationwide SAFE allocation is 2.45 million acres with more than 760,000 acres currently available to landowners for enrollment – 50,000 acres have been earmarked for Minnesota’s Back Forty Pheasant SAFE.
Enroll Today, Contact a Pheasants Forever Biologist
Pheasants Forever Farm Bill biologists are specialized staff in conservation programs and habitat planning on private lands. Their purpose is to provide landowners technical assistance on voluntary conservation programs through federal, state and local sources.
Landowners interested in learning more about Minnesota’s State Acres for Wildlife Enhancement practice, or other conservation program opportunities, should contact one of the following Pheasants Forever biologists:
CRP Continuous Signup
Environmentally desirable land devoted to certain conservation practices may be enrolled in CRP at any time under continuous signup. Offers are automatically accepted provided the land and producer meet certain eligibility requirements and acres are available.
Offers for continuous sign-up are not subject to competitive bidding. Continuous sign-up contracts are 10 to 15 years in duration.
To offer land for continuous signup, producers or landowners should contact their Pheasants Forever or Quail Forever Farm Bill wildlife biologist or visit their local USDA Service Center.
About Pheasants Forever:
Pheasants Forever, including its quail conservation division, Quail Forever, is the nation's largest nonprofit organization dedicated to upland habitat conservation. Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever have more than 140,000 members and 700 local chapters across the United States and Canada. Chapters are empowered to determine how 100 percent of their locally raised conservation funds are spent; the only national conservation organization that operates through this truly grassroots structure.