Even as South Dakota loses thousands of acres of pheasant cover (South Dakota is Dying), there iss some good news to report. The states CREP program is conserving some land upland birds and other wildlife. The total amount of acreage preserved is small, but every bit helps.
The final part of the Capital Journal’s excellent series on habit loss in South Dakota’s talks about the state’s CREP program , and points out some ways it is helping hunters and wildlife.
“Even as the total number of habitat acres continues to decline in South Dakota, there are success stories of programs helping to stem the tide of conversion of grassland back to crops.
The South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks accepted the first enrollments in 2010 in a plan that makes it more attractive for producers in a designated area to keep land in the federal Conservation Reserve Program. The program, called CREP, or Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program, adds a portion of state dollars to enhance the payments landowners receive.
And hunters who prefer the flat fields of the James River Valley are among those who benefit, since the program requires that landowners allow hunter/angler access as part of the deal…”
If you read my post South Dakota is Dying, you know habit loss is leading to decline in pheasants and other wildlife species throughout the state. But here’s something you may not know: Crop Insurance Programs are behind some of this habitat loss. And who pays for these Crop Insurance Programs? You, me, and anyone else who pays taxes to the United States Federal Government.
A couple day ago, Bloomberg.com posted this eye-opening piece about the impact that Crop Insurance Programs are having across South Dakota and the western US. Check it out and learn more about how you’re paying to decimate wildlife numbers across America: