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News Release

NRCS Announces Second Sign-Up Round for Aquaculture Farmers in FY 2017

NRCS Announces Second Sign-Up Round for Aquaculture Farmers in FY 2017

Deadline: June 16, 2017

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Warwick, RI – May 16, 2017 - The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) still has FY 2017 funding available to support aquaculture farmers to meet their conservation objectives for oyster reef restoration. The purpose and goal is to work with aquaculture oyster growers to help restore the functions and values of oyster reefs by creating new reefs in approved areas.

The EQIP program has funding to assist with the following NRCS conservation practices:

643 – Restoration and Management of Declining Habitats
This practice payment rate includes the process of obtaining approved spat on shell through grow out and deployment at approved restoration sites as well as obtaining and deployment of cultch (shell) for which the live oysters are placed on top. The practices also includes funding for monitoring the success of the site.

472 – Access Control
This practice payment consists of demarking the approved restoration site with buoys.

Proposed Sites:

Quonochontaug “Quonnie” Pond

Potter Pond

Eligibility-Who Can Apply?

Must be an existing aquaculture oyster producer.
Own, rent, or have control of land (i.e., lease).
Comply with adjusted gross income limitations (AGI) provisions.

Other considerations:

DEM and CRMC must designate the site and provide land control documentation.
Grower (with DEM and CRMC) must obtain all relevant permits.
Cultch must be inspected.

How to apply:

Contact local NRCS field office to speak with one of our District Conservationist (Southern or Eastern Districts) to begin the program application process. Information and application forms are available on our website.

Eastern RI Soil Conservationist Serving Newport and Bristol Counties
​Ghyllian Conley, Ghyllian.conley@ri.usda.gov, Phone: (401) 822-8835

Southern RI District Conservationist- Serving Kent and Washington Counties
Melissa Hayden, Melissa.hayden@ri.usda.gov, Phone: (401) 822-8847

Natural Resources Conservation Service
60 Quaker Lane Suite 46
Warwick, RI 02886
Web site: www.ri.nrcs.usda.gov