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Wildlife Habitat Incentives Program

With the enactment of the Agricultural Act (February 7, 2014) funding provided for the Wildlife Habitat Incentive Program (WHIP) in FY-2014 is no longer available for obligations. WHIP is not reauthorized.

NRCS will honor and continue to support fiscal year 2014 WHIP program contracts using the rules and policy that was in effect at the time of contract obligations.

Portions of the WHIP Statute were rolled into the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). Anyone still interested in applying for wildlife projects in programs should go to the  EQIP web page.




The Wildlife Habitat Incentives Program (WHIP) was a voluntary program for people who wanted to develop and improve wildlife habitat primarily on private land. Through WHIP USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service provided both technical assistance and financial assistance to establish and improve fish and wildlife habitat. WHIP agreements between NRCS and the participant last up to one year after the last planned practice and generally not more than 5 years.

The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 reauthorized WHIP as a voluntary approach to improving wildlife habitat in our Nation. Program administration of WHIP is provided under the Natural Resources Conservation Service.

In early 2014, WHIP was targeted to the West Branch of the White River watershed. Funds were available to work in collaboration with Federal, state and local partners with landowners along the West Branch of the White River to restore Irene damaged streams using engineered log jams. 

2014 WHIP Documents

The following documents require Acrobat Reader

2014 WHIP Ranking Questions
2014 WHIP Practices and Payment Amounts

Interested applicants are strongly encouraged to visit their local Farm Service Agency (FSA) and register as a program applicant, if they have not already done so, to complete the necessary paperwork to determine eligibility.

PLEASE NOTE: Practices started or completed before NRCS signs the contract are not eligible for payments, in accordance with program regulation and the Conservation Program Contract (CPC) appendix. Starting a practice or engaging the services of a technical service provider (TSP) before the contract is approved by NRCS renders an applicant ineligible for payment unless a waiver has been granted by the State Conservationist. Requests for a waiver to this provision must be made in writing. Waivers may be considered in special cases for meritorious reasons for applications that meet all eligibility requirements, provided that the practice was not started when the waiver application is made.


The following documents require Acrobat Reader
Fact Sheet (PDF; 135 KB)
Vermont WHIP Plan (PDF; 399 KB)
Early Successional Habitat Management Information Sheet (PDF; 294 KB) 
Shrubland Bird Information Sheet (PDF: 508 KB)

For local information or to apply, contact your Local NRCS Office.

Electronic application filing is available through the Electronic Government website.

VT NRCS Office Locations and Contact Information

WHIP Information (National NRCS Website)


Heather Wetzstein    
Phone: 802-951-6796 ext. 223