Federal Funding Available for Private Grassland Projects

The Department of Natural Resources reminds landowners in the Saginaw Bay and the western Lake Erie watersheds that money is available to help establish, restore or improve the quality of grasslands on their property.

The United States Department of Agriculture, Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) has made funding available for private landowners who want to create high-quality grasslands or enhance the quality of present grasslands.  The NRCS’ Wildlife Habitat Incentive Program (WHIP) offers financial assistance for site preparation, seed, planting and other needed practices to help improve or increase grasslands on private property.

The WHIP program differs from other USDA programs in that landowners do not need to have an agricultural history on the land to be eligible.

“Increasing acres of grasslands and improving present grasslands are major goals of the Department of Natural Resources,” said DNR Wildlife Division Chief Russ Mason.  “And it ties right into our Michigan Pheasant Restoration Initiative, which we began earlier this year in cooperation with many conservation partners, such as Michigan United Conservation Clubs, Pheasants Forever, National Wild Turkey Federation, Ducks Unlimited, Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development and several USDA agencies.”

Signup for this program will be allowed for most of the month of December. More information is available through the local NRCS office or the conservation district in your county.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state's natural and cultural resources for current and future generations. For more information, go to www.michigan.gov/dnr.