Thursday, June 22, 2017

FLORIDA LAND STEWARD UPDATE 6/23/17

AIR POTATO PATROL CITIZEN SCIENCE PROJECT
A new on-line Citizen Science project is looking for volunteers at https://airpotatobeetle.com/. This collaborative project between University of Florida IFAS Extension and Florida Dept. of Agriculture and Consumer Services seeks to educate residents on how to identify and better control air potato vines, and to gather data important to current research and air potato leaf beetle tracking. The website contains educational videos and a blog to educate the participants and keep them updated. Volunteers will be asked to complete surveys to evaluate the level of air potato infestation and the presence of the air potato beetles in their test plots. For more information please visit the website or contact William Lester, UF/IFAS Extension, at wlester@ufl.edu.

2017 SOUTHERN PINE BEETLE ASSISTANCE AND PREVENTION PROGRAM
Apply by July 31, 2017
The Florida Forest Service has announced the 2017 Southern Pine Beetle Assistance and Prevention Program, offered to eligible non-industrial private forest landowners by the Florida Forest Service (FFS) through temporary grants from the USDA Forest Service.

The goal of this program is to minimize SPB damage in Florida by helping forest landowners conduct management practices that can make their pine stands less susceptible to this destructive insect pest. Forest management practices such as thinning, prescribed burning, other competition control, and use of less-susceptible pine species can improve the health of pine stands and decrease their likelihood of developing SPB infestations.

The program offers partial cost reimbursement or incentive payments for first pulpwood thinning, prescribed burning, planting longleaf and/or slash pine, and mechanical underbrush treatments. All payments are made at specified per-acre or per-seedling rates.

The program is limited to 44 northern Florida counties located within the range of the southern pine beetle. Qualified landowners may apply for up to two approved practices per year. The minimum tract size requirement is 10 acres (5 acres for a First Pulpwood Thinning) and funding requests may not exceed $10,000. Only one application per landowner is permitted per year. All applications received during the sign-up period will be evaluated and ranked to determine which applications can be approved with the available grant funds. Applications that meet all of the eligibility and program requirements will be evaluated for funding. Landowners with current, active Forest Stewardship Plans or Tree Farm Certification will receive a 15-point boost in their ranking score. Those with a consultant-prepared Multi-Resource Management Plan (MRMP) on file with the County Forester will receive a 10-point increase.

More details are on the 2017 SPB Program web page.
Contact your Florida Forest Service County Forester to apply.

JUNE IS NATIONAL POLLINATOR MONTH
Bees are our most important pollinators and there are over 4,000 native bee species in North America. Many are declining. Learn how your garden can support bees and other pollinators and join a national effort.

Information from UF/IFAS Extension about Florida native plants:
https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/topic_native_plants

FLORIDA LAND STEWARD CALENDAR OF EVENTS

USDA FARM SERVICE AGENCY OFFERS WILDFIRE RECOVERY ASSISTANCE
USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) offers disaster assistance and low-interest loan programs to assist agricultural producers in their recovery efforts following wildfires or other qualifying natural disasters.

For more information on these programs, visit www.fsa.usda.gov/disaster or contact your local FSA office. To find the local FSA office, visit http://offices.usda.gov/.

FUNDING AVAILABLE FOR COGONGRASS CONTROL ON PRIVATE LANDS WITHIN APALACHICOLA WATERSHED
Funding is available from the US Fish and Wildlife Service Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program for invasive species control within the Apalachicola River watershed. Cogongrass on private lands in Gadsden and Liberty counties is highest priority for treatment. This is a 60% cost share. Contact Brian Pelc, The Nature Conservancy, (727) 515-8313, bpelc@tnc.org.

SOMETHING BUGGING YOUR TREES? - CHECK OUT THE NEW DIAGNOSTICS FORUM
Hosted by a group of forest and tree health specialists with Southeastern universities and agencies, we are here to help identify pests and diseases in your forest or you backyard, and to recommend a solution, if appropriate. Join the group and report your tree health issue!

Visit the new Forest Health Diagnostic forum on Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/SouthernTreeHealthDiagnostics/

FLORIDA FOREST SERVICE RELEASES FIRE INFORMATION APP       
Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam and the Florida Forest Service have announced the release of “FLBurnTools,” a new mobile app to inform the public about drought, wildfire danger and wildfire activity. Prescribed burn practitioners can also use the app to plan and submit authorization requests.


ONGOING SERVICES, INITIATIVES, PROGRAMS:
______________________________________________________________________

FOREST STEWARDSHIP VIDEOS  - VIEW AND SHARE!
All the latest videos are on the Florida Forest Stewardship Program home page:
http://sfrc.ufl.edu/forest_stewardship

GOT AN INVASIVE SPECIES PROBLEM?
Go to floridainvasives.org for information, assistance and partnership opportunities.

LOOKING FOR INFORMATION ON A PARTICULAR TOPIC?
Check the vast array of extension publications available through UF/IFAS on the EDIS publication site:  http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/  Wow, there’s a publication about that?


FWC REQUESTS REPORTS OF WILDLIFE SIGHTINGS:

UF/IFAS SCHOOL OF FOREST RESOURCES AND CONSERVATION EXTENSION PROGRAMS
See http://sfrc.ufl.edu/extension


FORESTRY AND NATURAL RESOURCES WEBINARS
For a calendar of upcoming webinars in a variety of land management topics see:
http://www.forestrywebinars.net/webinar-calendar/month#.T-zLkBhgZys.blogger


SOUTHERN REGION EXTENSION FORESTRY
See http://sref.info/ for the latest news, tools and offer

Friday, June 16, 2017

FLORIDA LAND STEWARD UPDATE 6/16/17

2017 SOUTHERN PINE BEETLE ASSISTANCE AND PREVENTION PROGRAM
Apply by July 31, 2017
The Florida Forest Service has announced the 2017 Southern Pine Beetle Assistance and Prevention Program, offered to eligible non-industrial private forest landowners by the Florida Forest Service (FFS) through temporary grants from the USDA Forest Service.

The goal of this program is to minimize SPB damage in Florida by helping forest landowners conduct management practices that can make their pine stands less susceptible to this destructive insect pest. Forest management practices such as thinning, prescribed burning, other competition control, and use of less-susceptible pine species can improve the health of pine stands and decrease their likelihood of developing SPB infestations.

The program offers partial cost reimbursement or incentive payments for first pulpwood thinning, prescribed burning, planting longleaf and/or slash pine, and mechanical underbrush treatments. All payments are made at specified per-acre or per-seedling rates.

The program is limited to 44 northern Florida counties located within the range of the southern pine beetle. Qualified landowners may apply for up to two approved practices per year. The minimum tract size requirement is 10 acres (5 acres for a First Pulpwood Thinning) and funding requests may not exceed $10,000. Only one application per landowner is permitted per year. All applications received during the sign-up period will be evaluated and ranked to determine which applications can be approved with the available grant funds. Applications that meet all of the eligibility and program requirements will be evaluated for funding. Landowners with current, active Forest Stewardship Plans or Tree Farm Certification will receive a 15-point boost in their ranking score. Those with a consultant-prepared Multi-Resource Management Plan (MRMP) on file with the County Forester will receive a 10-point increase.

More details are on the 2017 SPB Program web page.
Contact your Florida Forest Service County Forester to apply.

JUNE IS NATIONAL POLLINATOR MONTH
Bees are our most important pollinators and there are over 4,000 native bee species in North America. Many are declining. Learn how your garden can support bees and other pollinators and join a national effort.

Information from UF/IFAS Extension about Florida native plants:
https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/topic_native_plants

FLORIDA LAND STEWARD CALENDAR OF EVENTS

JUNE 2017 ISSUE OF SOUTHERN FIRE EXCHANGE'S FIRE LINES NEWSLETTER NOW AVAILABLE
This issue's features: Is Precision Hurting Conservation?, Are Oaks Actually Helping Longleaf to Survive?, RxScience Launches with Collaborative Burn Event at Tall Timbers, JFSP Budget in a Hot Spot, A New Perspective on Fire Management: Florida: A Fire Survey by Stephen J Pyne, Key SFE Team Member Takes on New Role for the Association for Fire Ecology, Recent SFE Webinars Available on YouTube, AFE Fire Congress: Registration is Open!, Coming Soon! June Smoke Webinar Series.
      
Current and back issues of Fire Lines here

USDA FARM SERVICE AGENCY OFFERS WILDFIRE RECOVERY ASSISTANCE
USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) offers disaster assistance and low-interest loan programs to assist agricultural producers in their recovery efforts following wildfires or other qualifying natural disasters.

For more information on these programs, visit www.fsa.usda.gov/disaster or contact your local FSA office. To find the local FSA office, visit http://offices.usda.gov/.

FUNDING AVAILABLE FOR COGONGRASS CONTROL ON PRIVATE LANDS WITHIN APALACHICOLA WATERSHED
Funding is available from the US Fish and Wildlife Service Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program for invasive species control within the Apalachicola River watershed. Cogongrass on private lands in Gadsden and Liberty counties is highest priority for treatment. This is a 60% cost share. Contact Brian Pelc, The Nature Conservancy, (727) 515-8313, bpelc@tnc.org.

FUNDING HELPS RANCHERS CONSERVE FLORIDA PANTHER HABITAT
Application deadline is June 16
Ranchers in southwest Florida may be able to get financial assistance for managing their property for wildlife, including the Florida panther.  To be eligible, a producer’s operation must be in northeastern Collier County or southwestern Hendry County—an area identified as important for the long-term viability of the panther population. Federal, state and nonprofits are coordinating a suite of technical services and financial assistance to ranchers for practices such as building fencing and treating invasive plants.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is coordinating assistance to ranchers available through various agency programs. The USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) will provide technical and financial assistance for conservation practices through its Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP). The signup deadline to apply is June 16.

To find out how to participate contact Luis Gonzales at FWC, 863-648-3826 or Erin Myers at USFWS, 239-657-8009. At NRCS in Hendry County contact District Conservationist Jim Sutter, 863-674-5700, and in Collier County District Conservationist Bob Beck, 239-455-4100.

SOMETHING BUGGING YOUR TREES? - CHECK OUT THE NEW DIAGNOSTICS FORUM
Hosted by a group of forest and tree health specialists with Southeastern universities and agencies, we are here to help identify pests and diseases in your forest or you backyard, and to recommend a solution, if appropriate. Join the group and report your tree health issue!

Visit the new Forest Health Diagnostic forum on Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/SouthernTreeHealthDiagnostics/

FLORIDA FOREST SERVICE RELEASES FIRE INFORMATION APP       
Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam and the Florida Forest Service have announced the release of “FLBurnTools,” a new mobile app to inform the public about drought, wildfire danger and wildfire activity. Prescribed burn practitioners can also use the app to plan and submit authorization requests.


ONGOING SERVICES, INITIATIVES, PROGRAMS:
______________________________________________________________________

FOREST STEWARDSHIP VIDEOS  - VIEW AND SHARE!
All the latest videos are on the Florida Forest Stewardship Program home page:
http://sfrc.ufl.edu/forest_stewardship

GOT AN INVASIVE SPECIES PROBLEM?
Go to floridainvasives.org for information, assistance and partnership opportunities.

LOOKING FOR INFORMATION ON A PARTICULAR TOPIC?
Check the vast array of extension publications available through UF/IFAS on the EDIS publication site:  http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/  Wow, there’s a publication about that?


FWC REQUESTS REPORTS OF WILDLIFE SIGHTINGS:

UF/IFAS SCHOOL OF FOREST RESOURCES AND CONSERVATION EXTENSION PROGRAMS
See http://sfrc.ufl.edu/extension


FORESTRY AND NATURAL RESOURCES WEBINARS
For a calendar of upcoming webinars in a variety of land management topics see:
http://www.forestrywebinars.net/webinar-calendar/month#.T-zLkBhgZys.blogger


SOUTHERN REGION EXTENSION FORESTRY
See http://sref.info/ for the latest news, tools and offer

Friday, June 9, 2017

FLORIDA LAND STEWARD UPDATE 6/9/17

JUNE IS NATIONAL POLLINATOR MONTH
Bees are our most important pollinators and there are over 4,000 native bee species in North America. Many are declining. Learn how your garden can support bees and other pollinators and join a national effort.

Information from UF/IFAS Extension about Florida native plants:
https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/topic_native_plants

FLORIDA LAND STEWARD CALENDAR OF EVENTS

JUNE 2017 ISSUE OF SOUTHERN FIRE EXCHANGE'S FIRE LINES NEWSLETTER NOW AVAILABLE
This issue's features: Is Precision Hurting Conservation?, Are Oaks Actually Helping Longleaf to Survive?, RxScience Launches with Collaborative Burn Event at Tall Timbers, JFSP Budget in a Hot Spot, A New Perspective on Fire Management: Florida: A Fire Survey by Stephen J Pyne, Key SFE Team Member Takes on New Role for the Association for Fire Ecology, Recent SFE Webinars Available on YouTube, AFE Fire Congress: Registration is Open!, Coming Soon! June Smoke Webinar Series.
      
Current and back issues of Fire Lines here

USDA FARM SERVICE AGENCY OFFERS WILDFIRE RECOVERY ASSISTANCE
USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) offers disaster assistance and low-interest loan programs to assist agricultural producers in their recovery efforts following wildfires or other qualifying natural disasters.

For more information on these programs, visit www.fsa.usda.gov/disaster or contact your local FSA office. To find the local FSA office, visit http://offices.usda.gov/.

FUNDING AVAILABLE FOR COGONGRASS CONTROL ON PRIVATE LANDS WITHIN APALACHICOLA WATERSHED
Funding is available from the US Fish and Wildlife Service Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program for invasive species control within the Apalachicola River watershed. Cogongrass on private lands in Gadsden and Liberty counties is highest priority for treatment. This is a 60% cost share. Contact Brian Pelc, The Nature Conservancy, (727) 515-8313, bpelc@tnc.org.

FUNDING HELPS RANCHERS CONSERVE FLORIDA PANTHER HABITAT
Application deadline is June 16
Ranchers in southwest Florida may be able to get financial assistance for managing their property for wildlife, including the Florida panther.  To be eligible, a producer’s operation must be in northeastern Collier County or southwestern Hendry County—an area identified as important for the long-term viability of the panther population. Federal, state and nonprofits are coordinating a suite of technical services and financial assistance to ranchers for practices such as building fencing and treating invasive plants.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is coordinating assistance to ranchers available through various agency programs. The USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) will provide technical and financial assistance for conservation practices through its Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP). The signup deadline to apply is June 16.

To find out how to participate contact Luis Gonzales at FWC, 863-648-3826 or Erin Myers at USFWS, 239-657-8009. At NRCS in Hendry County contact District Conservationist Jim Sutter, 863-674-5700, and in Collier County District Conservationist Bob Beck, 239-455-4100.

SOMETHING BUGGING YOUR TREES? - CHECK OUT THE NEW DIAGNOSTICS FORUM
Hosted by a group of forest and tree health specialists with Southeastern universities and agencies, we are here to help identify pests and diseases in your forest or you backyard, and to recommend a solution, if appropriate. Join the group and report your tree health issue!

Visit the new Forest Health Diagnostic forum on Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/SouthernTreeHealthDiagnostics/

FLORIDA FOREST SERVICE RELEASES FIRE INFORMATION APP       
Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam and the Florida Forest Service have announced the release of “FLBurnTools,” a new mobile app to inform the public about drought, wildfire danger and wildfire activity. Prescribed burn practitioners can also use the app to plan and submit authorization requests.


ONGOING SERVICES, INITIATIVES, PROGRAMS:
______________________________________________________________________

FOREST STEWARDSHIP VIDEOS  - VIEW AND SHARE!
All the latest videos are on the Florida Forest Stewardship Program home page:
http://sfrc.ufl.edu/forest_stewardship

GOT AN INVASIVE SPECIES PROBLEM?
Go to floridainvasives.org for information, assistance and partnership opportunities.

LOOKING FOR INFORMATION ON A PARTICULAR TOPIC?
Check the vast array of extension publications available through UF/IFAS on the EDIS publication site:  http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/  Wow, there’s a publication about that?


FWC REQUESTS REPORTS OF WILDLIFE SIGHTINGS:

UF/IFAS SCHOOL OF FOREST RESOURCES AND CONSERVATION EXTENSION PROGRAMS
See http://sfrc.ufl.edu/extension


FORESTRY AND NATURAL RESOURCES WEBINARS
For a calendar of upcoming webinars in a variety of land management topics see:
http://www.forestrywebinars.net/webinar-calendar/month#.T-zLkBhgZys.blogger


SOUTHERN REGION EXTENSION FORESTRY
See http://sref.info/ for the latest news, tools and offer

Friday, May 19, 2017

FLORIDA LAND STEWARD UPDATE 5/19/17

LONGLEAF PINE CONE PROSPECTS FOR 2017 AND 2018
From the U.S. Forest Service, Southern Research Station
During the spring of 2017, cone production data were collected from selected low-density stands of mature longleaf pine, throughout its native range. Binocular counts of green cones and unfertilized conelets were conducted on the crowns of sampled trees, as viewed from a single location on the ground. The regional cone crop is good for 2017, at 61.9 cones per tree. As usual, there is natural variation in cone production across the region. Bumper crops (> 100 cones per tree) were observed in Escambia County, Alabama, Santa Rosa Country, Florida, Baker County, Georgia and Chattahoochee County, Georgia. See the full report here.

USDA FARM SERVICE AGENCY OFFERS WILDFIRE RECOVERY ASSISTANCE
USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) offers disaster assistance and low-interest loan programs to assist agricultural producers in their recovery efforts following wildfires or other qualifying natural disasters.

For more information on these programs, visit www.fsa.usda.gov/disaster or contact your local FSA office. To find the local FSA office, visit http://offices.usda.gov/.

FUNDING AVAILABLE FOR COGONGRASS CONTROL ON PRIVATE LANDS WITHIN APALACHICOLA WATERSHED
Funding is available from the US Fish and Wildlife Service Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program for invasive species control within the Apalachicola River watershed. Cogongrass on private lands in Gadsden and Liberty counties is highest priority for treatment. This is a 60% cost share. Contact Brian Pelc, The Nature Conservancy, (727) 515-8313, bpelc@tnc.org.

RESTORE LONGLEAF PINE FOREST, REESTABLISH QUAIL ON FLORIDA'S AG LANDS
Application Deadline is TODAY May 19
Agricultural producers in Florida have until May 19 to apply for financial assistance to restore longleaf pine and build habitat for northern bobwhite quail habitat.  Landowners can apply through Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) of the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). NRCS helps landowners plant and manage longleaf forests through practices such as prescribed burning. Longleaf forests benefit both wildlife and land managers. Private landowners can get financial and technical assistance to restore and protect quail habitat in the following counties: Santa Rosa¸ Okaloosa, Walton, Jackson, Leon, Jefferson, Madison, Hamilton, Columbia, Clay, Levy, Marion, Osceola, Baker, Citrus, Polk, Highlands, Manatee, Charlotte and Sarasota.

Contact your local USDA service center for more information. A NRCS district conservationist will help you develop a conservation plan customized to your land and assist you in the application process for financial assistance. Applications are accepted throughout the year, although funding selections are usually made once a year.  Learn more about getting started with NRCS.

FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE HELPS AG PRODUCERS IMPROVE WATER QUALITY
Application Deadline is TODAY May 19
Agricultural producers in three watersheds can apply for financial assistance from USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) until May 19 to improve water quality in high-priority streams and rivers. The watersheds are Deep Creek and Clarks Creek on the Lower St. Johns River within Putnam and St. Johns counties and the Little Scurlock Creek Watershed on the Lower Choctawhatchee River within Jackson and Washington counties.

The National Water Quality Initiative (NWQI) helps farmers and ranchers adopt conservation practices such as improving soil nutrient management, planting cover crops, using conservation cropping systems, establishing filter strips and monitoring water quality.

The contact for the Deep Creek and Clarks Creek watersheds is NRCS District Conservationist Lakeisha Barber, 386-328-2908, x3 and in Little Scurlock Creek contact District Conservationist MaryJane Nelson, 850-526-2610, x3.  The first step is to develop a conservation plan with a NRCS specialist. Contact your local field office in Florida. Learn more about participating in conservation programs at www.nrcs.usda.gov/GetStarted.

FUNDING HELPS RANCHERS CONSERVE FLORIDA PANTHER HABITAT
Application deadline is June 16
Ranchers in southwest Florida may be able to get financial assistance for managing their property for wildlife, including the Florida panther.  To be eligible, a producer’s operation must be in northeastern Collier County or southwestern Hendry County—an area identified as important for the long-term viability of the panther population. Federal, state and nonprofits are coordinating a suite of technical services and financial assistance to ranchers for practices such as building fencing and treating invasive plants.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is coordinating assistance to ranchers available through various agency programs. The USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) will provide technical and financial assistance for conservation practices through its Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP). The signup deadline to apply is June 16.

To find out how to participate contact Luis Gonzales at FWC, 863-648-3826 or Erin Myers at USFWS, 239-657-8009. At NRCS in Hendry County contact District Conservationist Jim Sutter, 863-674-5700, and in Collier County District Conservationist Bob Beck, 239-455-4100.

SOMETHING BUGGING YOUR TREES? - CHECK OUT THE NEW DIAGNOSTICS FORUM
Hosted by a group of forest and tree health specialists with Southeastern universities and agencies, we are here to help identify pests and diseases in your forest or you backyard, and to recommend a solution, if appropriate. Join the group and report your tree health issue!

Visit the new Forest Health Diagnostic forum on Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/SouthernTreeHealthDiagnostics/

FLORIDA FOREST SERVICE RELEASES FIRE INFORMATION APP       
Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam and the Florida Forest Service have announced the release of “FLBurnTools,” a new mobile app to inform the public about drought, wildfire danger and wildfire activity. Prescribed burn practitioners can also use the app to plan and submit authorization requests.


ONGOING SERVICES, INITIATIVES, PROGRAMS:
______________________________________________________________________

FOREST STEWARDSHIP VIDEOS  - VIEW AND SHARE!
All the latest videos are on the Florida Forest Stewardship Program home page:
http://sfrc.ufl.edu/forest_stewardship

GOT AN INVASIVE SPECIES PROBLEM?
Go to floridainvasives.org for information, assistance and partnership opportunities.

LOOKING FOR INFORMATION ON A PARTICULAR TOPIC?
Check the vast array of extension publications available through UF/IFAS on the EDIS publication site:  http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/  Wow, there’s a publication about that?


FWC REQUESTS REPORTS OF WILDLIFE SIGHTINGS:

UF/IFAS SCHOOL OF FOREST RESOURCES AND CONSERVATION EXTENSION PROGRAMS
See http://sfrc.ufl.edu/extension


FORESTRY AND NATURAL RESOURCES WEBINARS
For a calendar of upcoming webinars in a variety of land management topics see:
http://www.forestrywebinars.net/webinar-calendar/month#.T-zLkBhgZys.blogger


SOUTHERN REGION EXTENSION FORESTRY
See http://sref.info/ for the latest news, tools and offer

Friday, May 12, 2017

FLORIDA LAND STEWARD UPDATE 5/12/17



FUNDING AVAILABLE FOR COGONGRASS CONTROL ON PRIVATE LANDS WITHIN APALACHICOLA WATERSHED
Funding is available from the US Fish and Wildlife Service Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program for invasive species control within the Apalachicola River watershed. Cogongrass on private lands in Gadsden and Liberty counties is highest priority for treatment. This is a 60% cost share. Contact Brian Pelc, The Nature Conservancy, (727) 515-8313, bpelc@tnc.org.

RESTORE LONGLEAF PINE FOREST, REESTABLISH QUAIL ON FLORIDA'S AG LANDS
Sign up for financial assistance by May 19
Agricultural producers in Florida have until May 19 to apply for financial assistance to restore longleaf pine and build habitat for northern bobwhite quail habitat.  Landowners can apply through Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) of the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). NRCS helps landowners plant and manage longleaf forests through practices such as prescribed burning. Longleaf forests benefit both wildlife and land managers. Private landowners can get financial and technical assistance to restore and protect quail habitat in the following counties: Santa Rosa¸ Okaloosa, Walton, Jackson, Leon, Jefferson, Madison, Hamilton, Columbia, Clay, Levy, Marion, Osceola, Baker, Citrus, Polk, Highlands, Manatee, Charlotte and Sarasota.

Contact your local USDA service center for more information. A NRCS district conservationist will help you develop a conservation plan customized to your land and assist you in the application process for financial assistance. Applications are accepted throughout the year, although funding selections are usually made once a year.  Learn more about getting started with NRCS.

FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE HELPS AG PRODUCERS IMPROVE WATER QUALITY
Application Deadline is May 19
Agricultural producers in three watersheds can apply for financial assistance from USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) until May 19 to improve water quality in high-priority streams and rivers. The watersheds are Deep Creek and Clarks Creek on the Lower St. Johns River within Putnam and St. Johns counties and the Little Scurlock Creek Watershed on the Lower Choctawhatchee River within Jackson and Washington counties.

The National Water Quality Initiative (NWQI) helps farmers and ranchers adopt conservation practices such as improving soil nutrient management, planting cover crops, using conservation cropping systems, establishing filter strips and monitoring water quality.

The contact for the Deep Creek and Clarks Creek watersheds is NRCS District Conservationist Lakeisha Barber, 386-328-2908, x3 and in Little Scurlock Creek contact District Conservationist MaryJane Nelson, 850-526-2610, x3.  The first step is to develop a conservation plan with a NRCS specialist. Contact your local field office in Florida. Learn more about participating in conservation programs at www.nrcs.usda.gov/GetStarted.

FUNDING HELPS RANCHERS CONSERVE FLORIDA PANTHER HABITAT
Application deadline is June 16
Ranchers in southwest Florida may be able to get financial assistance for managing their property for wildlife, including the Florida panther.  To be eligible, a producer’s operation must be in northeastern Collier County or southwestern Hendry County—an area identified as important for the long-term viability of the panther population. Federal, state and nonprofits are coordinating a suite of technical services and financial assistance to ranchers for practices such as building fencing and treating invasive plants.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is coordinating assistance to ranchers available through various agency programs. The USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) will provide technical and financial assistance for conservation practices through its Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP). The signup deadline to apply is June 16.

To find out how to participate contact Luis Gonzales at FWC, 863-648-3826 or Erin Myers at USFWS, 239-657-8009. At NRCS in Hendry County contact District Conservationist Jim Sutter, 863-674-5700, and in Collier County District Conservationist Bob Beck, 239-455-4100.

SOMETHING BUGGING YOUR TREES? - CHECK OUT THE NEW DIAGNOSTICS FORUM
Hosted by a group of forest and tree health specialists with Southeastern universities and agencies, we are here to help identify pests and diseases in your forest or you backyard, and to recommend a solution, if appropriate. Join the group and report your tree health issue!

Visit the new Forest Health Diagnostic forum on Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/SouthernTreeHealthDiagnostics/

FLORIDA FOREST SERVICE RELEASES FIRE INFORMATION APP       
Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam and the Florida Forest Service have announced the release of “FLBurnTools,” a new mobile app to inform the public about drought, wildfire danger and wildfire activity. Prescribed burn practitioners can also use the app to plan and submit authorization requests.


ONGOING SERVICES, INITIATIVES, PROGRAMS:
______________________________________________________________________

FOREST STEWARDSHIP VIDEOS  - VIEW AND SHARE!
All the latest videos are on the Florida Forest Stewardship Program home page:
http://sfrc.ufl.edu/forest_stewardship

GOT AN INVASIVE SPECIES PROBLEM?
Go to floridainvasives.org for information, assistance and partnership opportunities.

LOOKING FOR INFORMATION ON A PARTICULAR TOPIC?
Check the vast array of extension publications available through UF/IFAS on the EDIS publication site:  http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/  Wow, there’s a publication about that?


FWC REQUESTS REPORTS OF WILDLIFE SIGHTINGS:

UF/IFAS SCHOOL OF FOREST RESOURCES AND CONSERVATION EXTENSION PROGRAMS
See http://sfrc.ufl.edu/extension


FORESTRY AND NATURAL RESOURCES WEBINARS
For a calendar of upcoming webinars in a variety of land management topics see:
http://www.forestrywebinars.net/webinar-calendar/month#.T-zLkBhgZys.blogger


SOUTHERN REGION EXTENSION FORESTRY
See http://sref.info/ for the latest news, tools and offer

Friday, May 5, 2017

FLORIDA LAND STEWARD UPDATE 5/5/17

SPRING / SUMMER 2017 ISSUE OF FLORIDA LAND STEWARD NEWSLETTER
Vol. 6, no. 2 is online and headed for mailboxes soon. In this issue: Forestry Wildlife Best Management Practices for State Imperiled Species: Enrollment Grows to Over 3 Million Acres, Wildlife-Friendly Fence Tips, Research Report: Economic Impact of Cogongrass on Nonindustrial Private Forest Landowners in Florida, ACF Consultants Corner: What's in a Title?, Timber Price Update, Certified Forest Stewards and Tree Farmers, Events Calendar. Current and back issues of the Florida Land Steward are at:
http://sfrc.ufl.edu/extension/florida_forestry_information/additional_pages/newsletter.html

2017 FLORIDA SOUTHERN PINE BEETLE FORCAST
Florida Forest Service, Forest Health Section
A pheromone trap survey was conducted in March 2017 as part of an ongoing program to monitor the populations of Southern Pine Beetle (SPB) and its associated predators. The purpose is to provide an early-season prediction of the potential level of SPB activity in select Florida counties, and identify areas which may be at increased risk for an outbreak. The results of the 2017 survey indicate that SPB populations levels are high and increasing in many counties in the Northeastern part of the State. See the full Florida SPB Report here.

AG PRODUCERS CAN EXTEND EXPIRING CONSERVATION STEWARDSHIP PROGRAM CONTRACTS
Last day to sign - May 5
Acting Deputy Agriculture Secretary Michael Young announced that a contract renewal sign-up is underway for the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP), USDA’s largest working lands conservation program with more than 80 million acres enrolled nationally.  USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) made several updates to the program last fall.  These changes help producers better evaluate conservation options that benefit their operations while improving the health and productivity of private and Tribal working lands. Participants with existing CSP contracts that will expire Dec. 31 can take advantage of the recent program changes by renewing their contracts for an additional five years if they agree to adopt additional conservation activities. Applications to renew expiring contracts are due by May 5.

Through CSP agricultural producers and forest landowners earn payments for managing, maintaining and expanding conservation activities like cover crops, buffer strips, pollinator and beneficial insect habitat and soil health building activities, while maintaining agricultural production on their land. Benefits to producers can include improved cattle gains per acre, increased crop yields, decreased inputs, wildlife population improvements and better resilience to weather extremes.

Producers interested in contract renewals or applying for CSP for the first time should visit www.nrcs.usda.gov/csp or contact your local field office in Florida.

FUNDING AVAILABLE FOR COGONGRASS CONTROL ON PRIVATE LANDS WITHIN APALACHICOLA WATERSHED
Funding is available from the US Fish and Wildlife Service Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program for invasive species control within the Apalachicola River watershed. Cogongrass on private lands in Gadsden and Liberty counties is highest priority for treatment. This is a 60% cost share. Contact Brian Pelc, The Nature Conservancy, (727) 515-8313, bpelc@tnc.org.

RESTORE LONGLEAF PINE FOREST, REESTABLISH QUAIL ON FLORIDA'S AG LANDS
Sign up for financial assistance by May 19
Agricultural producers in Florida have until May 19 to apply for financial assistance to restore longleaf pine and build habitat for northern bobwhite quail habitat.  Landowners can apply through Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) of the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). NRCS helps landowners plant and manage longleaf forests through practices such as prescribed burning. Longleaf forests benefit both wildlife and land managers. Private landowners can get financial and technical assistance to restore and protect quail habitat in the following counties: Santa Rosa¸ Okaloosa, Walton, Jackson, Leon, Jefferson, Madison, Hamilton, Columbia, Clay, Levy, Marion, Osceola, Baker, Citrus, Polk, Highlands, Manatee, Charlotte and Sarasota.

Contact your local USDA service center for more information. A NRCS district conservationist will help you develop a conservation plan customized to your land and assist you in the application process for financial assistance. Applications are accepted throughout the year, although funding selections are usually made once a year.  Learn more about getting started with NRCS.

FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE HELPS AG PRODUCERS IMPROVE WATER QUALITY
Application Deadline is May 19
Agricultural producers in three watersheds can apply for financial assistance from USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) until May 19 to improve water quality in high-priority streams and rivers. The watersheds are Deep Creek and Clarks Creek on the Lower St. Johns River within Putnam and St. Johns counties and the Little Scurlock Creek Watershed on the Lower Choctawhatchee River within Jackson and Washington counties.

The National Water Quality Initiative (NWQI) helps farmers and ranchers adopt conservation practices such as improving soil nutrient management, planting cover crops, using conservation cropping systems, establishing filter strips and monitoring water quality.

The contact for the Deep Creek and Clarks Creek watersheds is NRCS District Conservationist Lakeisha Barber, 386-328-2908, x3 and in Little Scurlock Creek contact District Conservationist MaryJane Nelson, 850-526-2610, x3.  The first step is to develop a conservation plan with a NRCS specialist. Contact your local field office in Florida. Learn more about participating in conservation programs at www.nrcs.usda.gov/GetStarted.

SOMETHING BUGGING YOUR TREES? - CHECK OUT THE NEW DIAGNOSTICS FORUM
Hosted by a group of forest and tree health specialists with Southeastern universities and agencies, we are here to help identify pests and diseases in your forest or you backyard, and to recommend a solution, if appropriate. Join the group and report your tree health issue!

Visit the new Forest Health Diagnostic forum on Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/SouthernTreeHealthDiagnostics/

FLORIDA FOREST SERVICE RELEASES FIRE INFORMATION APP       
Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam and the Florida Forest Service have announced the release of “FLBurnTools,” a new mobile app to inform the public about drought, wildfire danger and wildfire activity. Prescribed burn practitioners can also use the app to plan and submit authorization requests.


ONGOING SERVICES, INITIATIVES, PROGRAMS:
______________________________________________________________________

FOREST STEWARDSHIP VIDEOS  - VIEW AND SHARE!
All the latest videos are on the Florida Forest Stewardship Program home page:
http://sfrc.ufl.edu/forest_stewardship

GOT AN INVASIVE SPECIES PROBLEM?
Go to floridainvasives.org for information, assistance and partnership opportunities.

LOOKING FOR INFORMATION ON A PARTICULAR TOPIC?
Check the vast array of extension publications available through UF/IFAS on the EDIS publication site:  http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/  Wow, there’s a publication about that?


FWC REQUESTS REPORTS OF WILDLIFE SIGHTINGS:

UF/IFAS SCHOOL OF FOREST RESOURCES AND CONSERVATION EXTENSION PROGRAMS
See http://sfrc.ufl.edu/extension


FORESTRY AND NATURAL RESOURCES WEBINARS
For a calendar of upcoming webinars in a variety of land management topics see:
http://www.forestrywebinars.net/webinar-calendar/month#.T-zLkBhgZys.blogger


SOUTHERN REGION EXTENSION FORESTRY
See http://sref.info/ for the latest news, tools and offer

Friday, April 28, 2017

FLORIDA LAND STEWARD UPDATE 4/28/17

WE ARE PARCHED AND WILDFIRES ABOUND
As of this morning there are more than 120 wildfires burning on more than 130,000 acres across Florida and this season is just getting started. Please be careful out there with barbeques, campfires, fireworks, and anything else involving a flame. Needless to say, prescribed burning is largely on hold until we get some much-needed rains.
      
The latest information on wildfires is on the Florida Forest Service website at:
http://www.freshfromflorida.com/Divisions-Offices/Florida-Forest-Service/Wildland-Fire/Current-Fire-Conditions

Drought and associated wildfire activity will likely result in tree stress and an increase in southern pine beetle infestations over the next few months. Keep a close eye on your pine stands and consult your forester if you suspect a forest health issue. The new Forest Health Diagnostic forum is also a good place to consult with forest health experts:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/SouthernTreeHealthDiagnostics/

APRIL 2017 ISSUE OF SOUTHERN FIRE EXCHANGE'S FIRE LINES NEWSLETTER AVAILABLE
This issue of our bimonthly newsletter has the following articles sharing resources, news, and upcoming events from around the Southeast region and nationwide: Tools Designed for Managers in the Southeast: Use Them This Spring, SFE Survey: Help Us Help You, AFE Fire Congress: Proposal Reminder, Updated IFTDSS Is Now Available, New LANDFIRE Practitioners’ Guide, Longleaf Challenge: Boy Scouts Field Event in Florida, New SFE Fact Sheet: Prescribed Fire and Wildfire Risk Reduction, 2016 SFE Annual Report, Wildland Fire Sensors Challenge, Century of Wildland Fire Research: Videos Available, New Synthesis: Appalachian Fire History, Apply Now for 2017 AFE Certification.

Current and back issues of Fire Lines at: http://www.southernfireexchange.org/SFE_Publications/Newsletter.html

FUNDING AVAILABLE FOR COGONGRASS CONTROL ON PRIVATE LANDS WITHIN APALACHICOLA WATERSHED
Funding is available from the US Fish and Wildlife Service Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program for invasive species control within the Apalachicola River watershed. Cogongrass on private lands in Gadsden and Liberty counties is highest priority for treatment. This is a 60% cost share. Contact Brian Pelc, The Nature Conservancy, (727) 515-8313, bpelc@tnc.org.

SOMETHING BUGGING YOUR TREES? - CHECK OUT THE NEW DIAGNOSTICS FORUM
Hosted by a group of forest and tree health specialists with Southeastern universities and agencies, we are here to help identify pests and diseases in your forest or you backyard, and to recommend a solution, if appropriate. Join the group and report your tree health issue!

Visit the new Forest Health Diagnostic forum on Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/SouthernTreeHealthDiagnostics/

RESTORE LONGLEAF PINE FOREST, REESTABLISH QUAIL ON FLORIDA'S AG LANDS
Sign up for financial assistance by May 19
Agricultural producers in Florida have until May 19 to apply for financial assistance to restore longleaf pine and build habitat for northern bobwhite quail habitat.  Landowners can apply through Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) of the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). NRCS helps landowners plant and manage longleaf forests through practices such as prescribed burning. Longleaf forests benefit both wildlife and land managers. Private landowners can get financial and technical assistance to restore and protect quail habitat in the following counties: Santa Rosa¸ Okaloosa, Walton, Jackson, Leon, Jefferson, Madison, Hamilton, Columbia, Clay, Levy, Marion, Osceola, Baker, Citrus, Polk, Highlands, Manatee, Charlotte and Sarasota.

Contact your local USDA service center for more information. A NRCS district conservationist will help you develop a conservation plan customized to your land and assist you in the application process for financial assistance. Applications are accepted throughout the year, although funding selections are usually made once a year.  Learn more about getting started with NRCS.

FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE HELPS AG PRODUCERS IMPROVE WATER QUALITY
Application Deadline is May 19
Agricultural producers in three watersheds can apply for financial assistance from USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) until May 19 to improve water quality in high-priority streams and rivers. The watersheds are Deep Creek and Clarks Creek on the Lower St. Johns River within Putnam and St. Johns counties and the Little Scurlock Creek Watershed on the Lower Choctawhatchee River within Jackson and Washington counties.

The National Water Quality Initiative (NWQI) helps farmers and ranchers adopt conservation practices such as improving soil nutrient management, planting cover crops, using conservation cropping systems, establishing filter strips and monitoring water quality.

The contact for the Deep Creek and Clarks Creek watersheds is NRCS District Conservationist Lakeisha Barber, 386-328-2908, x3 and in Little Scurlock Creek contact District Conservationist MaryJane Nelson, 850-526-2610, x3.  The first step is to develop a conservation plan with a NRCS specialist. Contact your local field office in Florida. Learn more about participating in conservation programs at www.nrcs.usda.gov/GetStarted.

FLORIDA FOREST SERVICE RELEASES FIRE INFORMATION APP       
Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam and the Florida Forest Service have announced the release of “FLBurnTools,” a new mobile app to inform the public about drought, wildfire danger and wildfire activity. Prescribed burn practitioners can also use the app to plan and submit authorization requests.


ONGOING SERVICES, INITIATIVES, PROGRAMS:
______________________________________________________________________

FOREST STEWARDSHIP VIDEOS  - VIEW AND SHARE!
All the latest videos are on the Florida Forest Stewardship Program home page:
http://sfrc.ufl.edu/forest_stewardship

GOT AN INVASIVE SPECIES PROBLEM?
Go to floridainvasives.org for information, assistance and partnership opportunities.

LOOKING FOR INFORMATION ON A PARTICULAR TOPIC?
Check the vast array of extension publications available through UF/IFAS on the EDIS publication site:  http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/  Wow, there’s a publication about that?


FWC REQUESTS REPORTS OF WILDLIFE SIGHTINGS:

UF/IFAS SCHOOL OF FOREST RESOURCES AND CONSERVATION EXTENSION PROGRAMS
See http://sfrc.ufl.edu/extension


FORESTRY AND NATURAL RESOURCES WEBINARS
For a calendar of upcoming webinars in a variety of land management topics see:
http://www.forestrywebinars.net/webinar-calendar/month#.T-zLkBhgZys.blogger


SOUTHERN REGION EXTENSION FORESTRY
See http://sref.info/ for the latest news, tools and offer