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News - Window Soon Closing for New Federal Conservation Program

Natural Resources Conservation Service - News Release

Window Soon Closing for New Federal Conservation Program

Jim Spear (530) 527-2667, ex 104
Dave Sanden (530) 527-2667, ex 107

DAVIS, Calif., March 22, 2012—The window of opportunity to enroll in a new habitat conservation program for this year will soon be closing. The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is accepting applications for the Waterbird Habitat Enhancement Program (WHEP) through Friday, April 6, 2012.

For Fiscal Year 2012, regional funding was established for WHEP from California’s Bay Delta Initiative allocations to help producers fund the implementation of conservation practices that enhance wildlife habitat for birds on eligible agricultural lands. The program is being implemented within the Sacramento Valley in support of that region’s designation as an International Area of Shorebird Importance. WHEP will provide support to eligible agricultural operations for the implementation of conservation practices to enhance bird habitat. The eligible program area includes Butte, Colusa, Glenn, Sutter, Yolo and Yuba counties.

WHEP is targeted specifically to agricultural operations that have the capacity to adopt and apply conservation practices to provide and maintain shallow water wetlands, mudflats, nesting islands, and other associated wildlife structures that provide for seasonal or year-round breeding and wintering habitat for shorebirds, wading birds, and waterfowl.

Eligible producers who submit applications and other required documents by close-of-business on April 6, 2012, will be considered for this Fiscal Year 2012 funding cycle. Funding decisions will be made according to the highest priority list of screened and ranked applications available at that time. Applications will continue to be accepted after this deadline, but ranking and funding decisions will be deferred until the next funding cycle.

Interested parties in the eligible program area should contact their local NRCS Service Center as soon as possible to learn more about the program and application process. Additional information on WHEP can be found on the California NRCS Web site at

NRCS has provided leadership in a partnership effort to help America's private land owners and managers conserve their soil, water and other natural resources since 1935. For more information on NRCS, visit


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