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Working Lands for Wildlife: Lesser Prairie Chicken Initiative in CO

Image of a Lesser Prairie Chicken

Through the Lesser Prairie Chicken Initiative (LPCI), NRCS works with landowners in five states to improve habitat for lesser prairie chicken and improve sustainability and productivity of native rangelands. The initiative also helps landowners reduce threats to lesser prairie chicken, on their property. Using a voluntary and incentive based approach, NRCS focuses its resources in priority conservation areas and areas with higher bird populations.

Prairie chickens are ground-dwelling birds, native to sand sage rangelands of the American West. Over the decades they have experienced a significant decline in population and habitat.

Colorado LPC Action Area Map - Click to enlargeHow LPCI Works

NRCS uses Farm Bill conservation programs, such as Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP), to provide technical and financial assistance to help ranchers accelerate installation of conservation practices on the ground. Conservation practices are designed to be win-win solutions addressing threats facing both lesser prairie chicken and rangelands. This type of conservation work includes:

While LPCI focuses its work on private lands, home to about 90 percent of the birds, NRCS also participates in projects on state and federal lands where ranchers have leases for grazing. This unparalleled partnership aims for seamless conservation across boundaries.

EQIP LPCI

The NRCS accepts applications on an ongoing basis. In Colorado, landowners in Baca, Prowers, Kiowa, Cheyenne, and Lincoln counties are encouraged to visit with their local NRCS Field Office to inquire about benefits of participating in the initiative. 

Application FormsLPCI Investment Strategy PDF - Click to download

For funding consideration, complete the application using form CPA-1200 "NRCS Conservation Program Application" located on the Colorado EQIP webpage where you can also view the Ranking Documents, Eligible Practices & Payment Rates. You may complete and print the form online.

More Information

NRCS’ lesser prairie chicken conservation efforts are part of Working Lands for Wildlife (WLFW), the agency’s effort to accelerate conservation efforts for at-risk species. More information on WLFW.

Additional References

State Contact:

Chanda Pettie, State Biologist
Denver Federal Center, Bldg 56, Rm 2604
P.O. Box 25426
Denver, CO 80225-0426
Office: (720) 544-2804