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Miller County WRP Success Story

Bringing nature home

WRP helps turn 22,000 acres into wildlife paradise

Dana Horn started with just 363 acres enrolled in the Wetlands Reserve Program in 1997, and since then has added to it for a total of approximately 17,000 acres in WRP and 120 acres in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP).

This land benefits more than ducks and it is all thanks to Horn keeping the big picture and long-term plan in mind.

Horn has a superior grasp on what is important for wildlife and his farm in Miller County. "Water is king," he says. "It is precious and is getting more so." Ample water is available from rivers, lakes and wells on the property to irrigate both crop land and WRP moist soil units. The largest pump can move 12,000 gallons of water per minute.

NRCS Resource Engineer, Randy Childress, designed the plans to utilize the irrigation canals already on the farm. Working with the on-site manager Brendon Burrell, Childress and Horn are restoring micro-typography potholes and habitat mounds in the WRP sites and monitoring the 902,000 trees planted.

The value for wildlife is enhanced by the cypress swamps, hardwood timber and farm fields. The complete mosaic is a paradise for wildlife. Deer, otters, alligators, bobcats, waterfowl, and songbirds all call the farm home.

"The CRP buffer parallel to the creek acts like a corridor for wild creatures to move about the farm," says Brendon, as he points out a golden eagle roosting atop a tree along the creek. Most impressive though is more than 176 species of birds and mammals are now found on the easement, where as prior to restoration efforts the count was only 36, (as reported by the SW Arkansas Audubon Society).

Horn came home to the land of his youth and now he is bringing nature home to his land.

Last Modified: 02/25/2011