Program provides technical assistance and financial incentives to enhance wildlife habitat on private land in Kansas; March 31 deadline
PRATT — Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks (KDWP) officials have announced the State Wildlife Grant (SWG) Private Landowner Program has, to date, awarded $235,444 of SWG funds to 22 private landowners. Projects funded include removing invasive woody plants from native mixed-grass prairie, constructing alternate watering facilities to help with native short-grass prairie management, and construction of perimeter fencing on expiring CRP fields to help maintain those fields in native grass. These projects will improve more than 5,000 acres of habitat for “species of greatest conservation need” (SGCN) in Kansas.
KDWP originally received $400,000 of SWG funds from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to aid in the protection and management of priority habitats for SGCN, so applications are still being accepted, with a deadline of March 31. This is the third sign-up for this project during which KDWP may distribute the remaining $164,556 from the original $400,000 of SWG funds and an additional $83,000 in non-federal funds to private landowners interested in implementing habitat projects.
Those landowners receiving funding will be required to match a minimum of 25 percent of total project costs. This match can either be a cash contribution from a non-federal source or contributions of labor, materials, or equipment use.
Applications will be accepted until available funds have been committed.
To be eligible, applications must address issues and strategies identified in the Kansas Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Plan, found on the KDWP website,www.kdwp.state.ks.us, under “Other Services/Kansas CWCP/Kansas CWCP.” Applications will be scored based on established criteria to ensure all applicants are considered fairly and that the highest ranking projects are selected. Higher priority consideration will be given to proposals that specifically address restoration and enhancement activities that will contribute to the development or maintenance of large grassland blocks capable of supporting area-sensitive wildlife species, the restoration or maintenance of areas supporting high densities of playa lakes surrounded by grasslands, and the restoration or enhancement of streams and associated riparian buffers.
Interested landowners should contact any KDWP regional office or private lands biologist for application materials or to schedule a consultation concerning a proposed project. Questions regarding program administration can be addressed to Roger Wolfe, KDWP Region 2 Office, 300 SW Wanamaker Road, Topeka, KS 66606, or by phoning 785-271-7388. Persons with special communication needs may use the Kansas Relay Center, 1-800-766-3777.