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PLN News: April 2015

About the Private Landowner Network, brought to you by the Resources First Foundation

We want beta test our new websites

Resources First Foundation and the Private Landowner Network are currently building new State Conservation Connection websites for Idaho and Virginia.

Click the images to visit the sites and send any feedback to

Help us make our most ambitious year ever even better!

In addition to building the Idaho, Virginia and Texas Conservation Connections this year, Resources First Foundation just received an anonymous pledge of $50,000 to (figuratively) break ground in Colorado.

With your matching support, we can make sure that all of the conservation information a Colorado landowner may need is never more than a click away.
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U.S. FWS, Wyoming, Sweetwater River Conservancy launch Nation's first greater sage-grouse conservation bank

"Senior officials from the U.S. Department of the Interior and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service joined Wyoming Governor Matt Mead today in announcing the launch of the nation's first conservation bank for greater sage-grouse. The bank will manage a vast expanse of central Wyoming for sage-grouse, mule deer and other wildlife."

Read the press release here.

Partners & landowners key to conservation

Photo: Brandon Thibodeaux, New York Times.

Speaking at the North American Wildlife and Natural Resources Conference, Jason Weller, chief of the NRCS, praised partnerships and voluntary efforts of private landowners that are critical to conservation successes across the country.

Read the release from the Sage Grouse Initiative.

Rancher Jay Tanner, mentioned in the release, was also profiled in our Keep Working Lands Working blog last August.

Farmers put down the plow for more productive soil

Photo: Sage Grouse Initiative.

North Dakota farmer Gabe Brown talks "about farming, specifically soil-conservation farming, a movement that promote leaving fields untilled, "green manures" and other soil-enhancing methods with an almost evangelistic fervor."

Read the story from the New York Times.

Family Farms are the focus of new agriculture census data

Happy Acres Family Farm. Photo: Linda Tanner.

The USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) reports that family-owned farms remain the backbone of the agriculture industry. The latest data come from the Census of Agriculture farm typology report and help shine light on the question, "What is a family farm?"

Learn more about the new census here.

Study: Forest managers hindered in efforts to use prescribed burns to control wildfires

Prescribed burn practice, ESSM Extension Unit.

"Forest managers would prefer to use prescribed burns every few years to help prevent costly wildfires and rebuild unhealthy ecosystems, but hurdles like staffing, budget, liability and new development hinder them, a new University of Florida study shows."

Read about the study from the University of Florida.

USDA implements 2014 Farm Bill provision to limit payments to non-farmers

NRCS field day in California. Photo: USDA.

The USDA "announced a proposed rule to limit farm payments to non-farmers, consistent with requirements Congress mandated in the 2014 Farm Bill..."

"In the Farm Bill, Congress gave USDA the authority to address this loophole for joint ventures and general partnerships, while exempting family farm operations from being impacted by the new rule."

Read the USDA's release here.
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