|Natural Resource Conservation Service Programs||Michigan Forestry Assistance Program||Michigan Pheasant Restoration Initiative||Michigan Hunter Access Program||District Wildlife Habitat Plant Fundraisers|
Natural Resource Conservation Service Programs
The NRCS provides financial assistance through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) to address wildlife habitat on working lands. The Wildlife funding pool is available to producers who will restore, develop, or enhance wildlife habitat, including but not limited to the Implementation of practices which:
- • benefit threatened and endangered, at-risk, candidate, or species of concern,
- • retain wildlife and plant habitat on land exiting the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) or other set-aside program,
- • benefit honey bee populations or other pollinators,
- • improve habitat for aquatic wildlife,
- • result in the management control of noxious or invasive plant species on non-cropland
- • result in practice installation on land that is directly adjacent to surface water and result in improved water quality by decreasing nutrients, sediment, pathogens, or agricultural chemicals delivered to surface waters,
- • result in livestock being excluded from forest land or environmentally sensitive areas
- • specifically address the control of invasive species,
- • establish Conservation Cover, Windbreak/Shelterbelts, Riparian Herbaceous Cover, Riparian Forest Buffer, Filter Strip, Tree/Shrub Establishment, Forest Stand Improvement,
- • result in additional habitat for a documented Threatened, Endangered, Special Concern Species, or a Michigan At-Risk Indicator Species,
- • create young age forest for woodcock in the Michigan American Woodcock Priority Areas,
- • improve mesic conifers by planting hemlock, white pine and/or white spruce in the Mesic Conifer Priority Areas (Upper Peninsula),
- • improve fish habitat (Riparian Buffers, Stream Habitat Improvement and Management),
- • result in aspen, birch, or jack pine regeneration,
- • implement one or more of the following management practices on grasslands: Prescribed Burning, Herbaceous Weed Control, Brush Management, Early Successional Habitat Development/Management,
- • improve the management of autumn olive in grasslands,
- • address pheasant/quail habitat improvement by planting shrubs or a switchgrass stand for winter cover.
Michigan Forestry Assistance Program
The goal of the program is to provide and increase the active management of non-industrial private forest (NIPF) landowner outreach and technical assistance through collaboration and cooperation. A survey conducted by Michigan State University of non-industrial private forest landowners concludes that only 20% of the 11 million acre resource is actively managed. The Forestry Assistance Program will work with local Conservation Districts to increase the number of landowners and acres that are managed under a sustainable forest management plan.
Michigan Pheasant Restoration Initiative
Michigan Conservation Districts is partnering with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Pheasants Forever, Michigan United Conservation Clubs, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Environment and other conservation organizations on the new Michigan Pheasant Restoration Initiative (MPRI). The initiative will help facilitate a revitalization of Michigan pheasants as well as benefiting the many other species that utilize grasslands.
The program currently focuses efforts in the following three zones:
- • Huron, Sanilac, and Tuscola counties
- • Gratiot, Saginaw, and Clinton counties
- • Hillsdale, Lenawee, and Monroe counties
Conservation Districts within these pilot zones have a technician who will work with eligible landowners and provide guidance and assistance on habitat prescriptions for pheasants. To be eligible, landowners must work together to devote large blocks of land that could serve as a patchwork of different privately owned lands set aside for habitat. This is a cooperative initiative that requires a group of property owners to voluntarily agree to work together in "Neighborhood Cooperatives" to implement habitat projects.
Technicians will also also assist cooperatives in identifying federal, state, and private assistance for funding or implementing habitat projects. NRCS and Farm Service Agency (FSA) will provide funding to landowners through conservation cost-share programs to install these habitat restoration practices. Chapters of Pheasants Forever will provide free seed to landowners. In some cases, the MDNRE will donate the use of farm implements and planting equipment, and release live pheasant if the area is suitable.
Landowners outside of the three pilot zones are encouraged to participate as well by forming Neighborhood Cooperatives, with Conservation Districts and Pheasants Forever Chapters available for program guidance.
MPRI Priority Area Map
Conservation District Contact Information
Frequently Asked Questions
Michigan Pheasant Restoration Initiative MDNR website