Nelson, NE – July 1st, 2018 – Pheasants Forever announces that it will receive $676,600 from the Nebraska Environmental Trust for the following programs; Corners for Wildlife (CFW), Grassland Improvement Program (GIP), Habitat Share, and the Mobile Prescribed Burn Unit & Education Outreach project. The Trust Board announced funding for the program at its spring meeting in Lincoln. These programs are out of the 105 projects receiving $18,301,819 in grant awards from the Nebraska Environmental Trust this year. Of these, 66 were new applications and 39 are carryover projects.
Habitat Share is a unique, highly efficient partnership between Pheasants Forever and Nebraska Game & Parks Commission (NGPC). The program completes new projects by matching federal funds and non-federal funds at a 3:1 ratio to have local contractors complete new and critical habitat efforts on wildlife management areas open to public access throughout the state. All the projects completed in the Habitat Share partnership are in addition to the projects completed by NGPC staff on an annual basis. This program includes practices benefiting pheasants, quail, and pollinators including tree removal, prescribed fire, interseeding, shrub planting, food plots, and smooth brome control. Since 2010, Habitat Share has impacted 24,004 acres of additional habitat on 108 Wildlife Management Areas across the state.
The CFW program continues to be a successful program and celebrates its 22 years of partnership between the Trust, Pheasants Forever, Inc., Quail Forever, Natural Resource Districts, NGPC and Landowners throughout the state to establish permanent wildlife habitat. This partnership has established 12,614 acres of habitat on private lands. Through the CFW program, landowners receive a rental payment for a five-year contract to establish and maintain high diversity wildlife habitat on center pivot irrigation field corners. Projects are specifically designed to meet the Nebraska Natural Legacy Project, Nebraska’s Berggren Plan, as well as several state and national pollinator goals. Establishment includes high quality nesting, brood-rearing and pollinator habitat for wildlife species of concern. With “in-kind” contributions included, the level of financial partnership being combined with Trust funds currently exceeds $9.2 million.
Quail Forever also received funding for a Mobile Prescribed Burn Unit and Education Outreach grant to help provide prescribed fire equipment and training throughout the state. Nearly every wildlife partnership and management plan in the state calls for the increased use of prescribed burns and expanded education regarding conservation programs. This grant provides support and more information to private landowners wanting to conduct prescribed fires or enter conservation programs on their lands. This partnership has resulted in over 15,000 attendees through landowner workshops.
The GIP program received the third and final year of funding. This program offers landowners grazing deferment incentives, access to prescribed burn equipment through prescribed burn associations, biologists to write burn plans, landowner prescribed burn training, and follow-up with a monitor and evaluation program on projects. This unique program seeks a proven and successful partnership that works to improve grassland health and vigor by increasing the use of prescribed burning on the landscape of Nebraska.
These programs represent a strong partnership within the Nebraska conservation community. These grants are made possible through a combination of partnerships between Quail Forever, Pheasants Forever, Nebraska Game & Parks Commission, United States Department of Agriculture, the US Fish & Wildlife Service, Natural Resources Districts, and the Nebraska Environmental Trust.
About the Nebraska Environmental Trust
The Nebraska Legislature created the Nebraska Environmental Trust in 1992. Using revenue from the Nebraska Lottery, the Trust has provided over $289 million in grants to over 2,000 projects across the state. Anyone – citizens, organizations, communities, farmers and businesses – can apply for funding to protect habitat, improve water quality and establish recycling programs in Nebraska. The Nebraska Environmental Trust works to preserve, protect and restore our natural resources for future generations.
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 149,000 members and 725 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. Since creation in 1982, Pheasants Forever has spent $784 million on 530,000 habitat projects benefiting 17 million acres nationwide.
Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever are dedicated to the conservation of pheasants, quail and other wildlife through habitat improvements, public awareness, education and land management policies and programs.