Iowa’s pheasant recovery plan takes a second step this year with a new 50,000 acre continuous CRP practice.
The new Iowa Pheasant Recovery project is Iowa’s fourth special project under USDA’s CP38 program “State Acres for Wildlife Enhancement” CRP practice to address local wildlife habitat conservation needs.
The Iowa Pheasant Recovery project was designed for the year-round needs of pheasants – provide severe winter cover, nesting habitat, and food – and be located in counties with the best chance for pheasant recovery.
“Combining specific conservation practices with counties where we have the opportunity to get the highest bird production should put us on the path of growing our pheasant population again once the plan is installed and has a few growing years under its belt,” said Todd Bogenschutz, upland biologist for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.
The requirements of the Iowa Pheasant Recovery project are designed to create favorable winter and nesting habitat, in addition to a nearby food source. Offered tracks will range in size of 20 to 160 acres, with requirements for severe winter cover and food. It may be stacked against existing CRP to create larger complex of habitat.
Eligible land must be cropped or considered cropped for four years between 2002 and 2007, as either row crops, small grains or forage crops grown in an acceptable rotation.
Rental rates will be based on a maximum soil rental rate established for the three predominant soils, plus an annual maintenance payment. The standard 50 percent FSA cost share is available, plus 40 percent incentive to establish the practice. There is a sign-up bonus of an additional $100 per acre. Contracts are for 10 to 15 years.
Some counties are not eligible for the Pheasant Recovery CP38, but Iowa has several other continuous CRP practices such as Upland Habitat Buffers, the new Highly Erodible Land Initiative, and many wetland practices. These continuous CRP practices are available statewide on a first come first serve basis.
Contact your local DNR Private Lands biologist at 515-281-5918 or www.iowadnr.gov/habitat
or stop by the local FSA office for more information.