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Conservation INsight
April 10, 2019
INDIANA Invasive Species Awareness Week, April 7-13
The Hoosier Gardener: 44 species expected to join state’s banned plants list
Jo Ellen Meyers Sharp, IndyStar correspondent (March 29, 2019)
After years of research to document problem plants and their financial impact, a new list of invasive species awaits the governor’s signature. The proposed rule changes add 44 exotic invasive species to the list that prohibits and restricts their sale, distribution and transport. Those involved with this huge step toward keeping Indiana’s environment natural anticipate Gov. Eric Holcomb will sign the new regulations into law during Invasive Species Awareness Week, April 7-13. The Indiana Invasive Species Council and the Department of Natural Resources will be spreading the word about problem plants, insects and animals that week, too.
Conservation Cropping Systems Initiative
CCSI is looking for images that illustrate the erosion damage seen across Indiana this spring, especially those that show bare or tilled fields vs. those with significant residue or living cover. Please use the link to upload your photos and/or videos, including information about the image and to whom photo credit should be given. 
Stewardship Week Theme: "Life in the Soil: Dig Deeper"
Mark your calendars:  NACD's Stewardship Week  begins on Sunday, April 28. Stewardship Week gives  conservation districts the opportunity to extend the reach of their education programs and educate future leaders on the significance of natural resource conservation. If your district is making plans for Stewardship Week, visit NACD’s new Stewardship Week webpage, stocked with resources and materials to help you host a successful event. 
2019 Members
Special thanks to the 74 counties who paid to be IDEA members for 2019.
Monthly Newsletter
Now Accepting Applications for 'Soil Health Program Manager' Position
Nonpoint Source Pollution Grant Application Solicitation
IDEM accepts grant applications for Section 319(h) and 205(j) funds only during certain specific time periods each year. This page is updated when new funds become available from U.S. EPA and grant funding priorities have been set by IDEM. Please note that applications submitted outside of the grant solicitation time period will not be considered for funding. Competition for grant funds is high and funds available are limited. Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to work with  IDEM staff  before submitting any grant application.
New Science Shows Benefits of Grazing Native Warm-Season Grasses
When it comes to keeping cows fat and happy, the newest available science shows integrating native grasses into grazing lands is a good option for agricultural producers. A literature review conducted by the University of Tennessee and funded by USDA found strong evidence that using native warm-season grasses caused steers to gain more weight per day and yield more beef per acre, compared with non-native grasses like tall fescue.
USDA Announces Sign-Up Period for Updated Conservation Stewardship Program
The next deadline for Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) applications to be considered for funding is May 10, 2019. NRCS plans to invest up to $700 million for new enrollments and contract extensions in FY 2019. The 2018 Farm Bill made several changes to this critical conservation program, which helps agricultural producers take the conservation activities on their farm or ranch to the next level.
Webinar Portal
The Webinar Portal is a “multi discipline” web platform used to promote and deliver live and on-demand webinars focused on forestry, conservation, climate science and other natural resource disciplines. Today the Portal, hosts over 100 live professionally presented webinars per year and provides on-demand viewing of over 740 archived webinars. All webinars are provided free of cost to viewers.
Map of the Month: April
This map shows the suitability of soils to be imaged using ground penetrating radar. The map was made by evaluating properties derived from soil mapping by the National Cooperative Soil Survey.
USDA Seeks Public Comments on Conservation Practice Standards
through April 25
USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is seeking public input on its existing national conservation practice standards as part of implementing the 2018 Farm Bill. 
Science to Solutions Report
The latest Science to Solutions report from USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, titled  Economic and Production Performance of Grazing Native Grasses in the Fescue Belt , highlighted how native warm-season grasses provide quality forage for livestock. 
2018 Farm Bill - What's New?
The 2018 Farm Bill provides support, certainty, and stability to our nation’s farmers, ranchers, and land stewards by enhancing farm support programs, improving crop insurance, maintaining disaster programs, and promoting and supporting voluntary conservation. 
Download these fact sheets for a listing of what’s new in the 2018 Farm Bill for programs administered by:
Purdue Extension News
Beginner’s Guide to Grant Writing -
Allen County
The Beginner’s Guide to Grant Writing Workshop teaches grant writers of all skill levels how to prepare and submit a professional proposal. The two-day interactive workshop takes place Thursday, April 18 and Wednesday, May 15, 2019 at 9:00 am to 4:30 pm local time on both days. The cost of the workshop is $175. Lunch and materials will be provided both days.
Women in Ag: Lunch n' Learn
April 15, 2019
11 am to 1 pm
Salem, Indiana
Register by Friday, April 12

Indiana's Outdoor News
Other News
Xerces Society
Spring has sprung--and the new season has ushered in exciting changes, more than we usually share in one enewsletter! Highlights include the beginning of new outreach efforts with our first team of Xerces Ambassadors, an update of our Bee Better Certified standards, a March Madness-themed beneficial insect championship, and one of our endangered species conservation biologists attending a trinational conference on monarchs.
Pollinator Week will be on June 17-23 this year! It's not too early to start thinking about hosting an event near you. See the link below for ideas, resources, and to share your local events.
April 13 - 12 noon to 3 pm
College Park Ministry Center, Indianapolis
Spring is here and NCRWN is getting to scale with watershed management, exploring new research on the impact of PFAS, and more!
Host a Women’s Learning Circle in Your County
Have you wondered about the possibility of reaching out to these landowners and providing a place for them to meet and learn? Women4theLand can help provide that opportunity!

"Women's Learning Circles" are a proven methodology that has been created as a way to reach female landowners. Women4theLand is an Indiana Conservation Partnership (ICP) initiative designed to support you, the district, in promoting conservation education and soil health messages to the women in your communities through these learning circles. 

For more information, please contact Heather Bacher, W4tL Coordinator, at  hbacher@women4theland.org  or 317-514-4634. Heather can help schedule a circle, answer questions, or provide an expanded copy of the survey report. 
Press Release from USDA-NASS
USDA Census of Agriculture One Week Away
Videos on how to use Census data are now available
(WASHINGTON, D.C., April 4, 2019) – The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will release the 2017 Census of Agriculture results on Thursday, April 11, at noon ET. The full Census report will include millions of data points, including number of farms, land in farms, total value of production, demographics, and more at the national, state, and county levels.
The report, along with a number of related publications, video presentations, and searchable data query interfaces, will be available on the NASS website at  www.na ss.usda.gov . Available now in preparation f or data release are three videos featuring NASS subject matter experts explaining the importance of the Census, what’s new in this Census, and how to find Census data.
Two months until Nature Play Days!
Create a Facebook page, gather resources, submit your event.
Job Postings  :
Current list of Conservation Job Opportunities now posted on the  IASWCD website.
  • Women for the Land Initiative Director, American Farmland Trust
  • Midwest Conservation Technician (Carlinville, IL), American Farmland Trust
  • Conservation Technician, Adams County SWCD
  • Senior Environmental Manager, IDEM
  • Soil Health Program Manager, ISDA
Note: Job Postings can be submitted to Amy Work at:  amy-work@iaswcd.org .  Please include job description and deadline to apply in a single PDF file or with a link.
Upcoming Conservation Events  :
April 7-13 - Indiana Invasive Species Awareness week
April 13 - Organic Gardening Workshop, Hamilton Co.
April 18 - Women in Ag webinar: Native Plants
April 22 - Earth Day
April 27 - Pollinator Day, Floyd County
May 13 - Making a Difference...Dearborn Co.
May 20 - World Bee Day
May 21 - State Soil Conservation Board meeting
May 27 - Memorial Day
May 28-June 5 - Stewardship Week
June 17-23 - Pollinator Week
June 20 - Using Native Warm Season Grasses/Grazing
July 16 - State Soil Conservation Board meeting
August 14 - River Friendly Farmer Awards event
August 20-21 - Conservation in Action Tour
September 17 - State Soil Conservation Board meeting
October 29 - State Soil Conservation Board meeting

For a complete list of upcoming conservation events,  go to the Events Calendar on the IASWCD website .