Private forestland owners in Michigan can receive conservation financial assistance through a partnership including the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the American Bird Conservancy.
EAST LANSING, May 1, 2023 — Private forestland owners in Michigan can receive conservation financial assistance through a partnership including the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the American Bird Conservancy. The partnership is offering financial assistance to forest owners in the Upper Peninsula and 19 counties in Northern Michigan to improve habitat for at-risk bird species and other wildlife.
Private forest owners can submit applications to their local USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service office. The Improving Forest Health for At-Risk Wildlife Resources Partnership was created through the USDA Regional Conservation Partnership Program. The funding is intended to create young forest habitat for the benefit of the golden-winged warbler and other at-risk species. Applications must be submitted by May 31, 2023, to be considered for the current round of funding.
Landowners in the Upper Peninsula and the Northern Michigan counties of Alcona, Alpena, Antrim, Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Clare, Crawford, Emmet, Iosco, Kalkaska, Manistee, Missaukee, Montmorency, Ogemaw, Oscoda, Otsego, Presque Isle, Roscommon, and Wexford are eligible to apply.
The project also includes counties in northern Minnesota and Wisconsin which will have their own application cut-off dates. The Improving Forest Health for At-Risk Wildlife Resources Partnership was initially selected for funding in 2017, and received additional funding in 2020. The new funding included $718,000 for the Michigan portion of the project.
Financial assistance is available for selected core conservation practices, including forest stand improvement and early successional habitat development and management. Additional supporting practices include; brush management and tree, shrub and grass planting. In addition to improving habitat for at-risk species, many of these practices also improve habitat for other wildlife such as ruffed grouse and white-tailed deer.
Landowners should make an appointment with their local NRCS office as soon as possible to begin the conservation planning process. More information about the Improving Forest Health for At-Risk Wildlife Resources Partnership, and other USDA conservation programs, is available on the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service website at www.mi.nrcs.usda.gov.