NRCS Programs for Pollinators and Wildlife

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If you listen to the Backyard Ecology podcast, then you are likely interested in creating pollinator and/or wildlife habitat on at least part of your property. The Natural Resources Conservation Service or NRCS is a federal agency that has a number of programs which can help us do just that. Previously, NRCS programs and services were restricted to people with 10 acres or more, but that is no longer the case.

In this episode of the Backyard Ecology Podcast, we talk with Randall Alcorn. Randall is a Private Lands Biologist with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources and an NRCS Area Liaison. (The NRCS is a federal agency, but in some states like Kentucky, they partner closely with the state fish and wildlife agency.)

During our conversation, Randall tells us about several NRCS programs including cost-share programs for pollinator habitat, timber stand improvement, invasive species management, early successional growth habitat, edge feathering, wetland conservation easements, riparian corridors, stream bank mitigation, ephemeral pools, and shallow wetlands. Some of these NRCS programs have a more regional scope, while others have a national scope.

Randall and I also talked about who to contact if you are interested in finding out more about the NRCS programs available in your area. Additionally, Randall walked us through a general timeline of what to expect if you apply for an NRCS program and how that works from a practical standpoint, including options for those who may have difficulty financing everything upfront before receiving the cost-share reimbursement.

Links:

Episode image:

Part of an NRCS planting in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Photo credit: Bob Nichols, NRCS, public domain

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