December 2019 Newsletter
Private Lands Partners Day 2019 Report Released

A recently completed report detailing the event has just been released. The report can be found here. Private Lands Partners Day 2020 will be held near Redmond, Oregon and has already been scheduled for October 6-8, 2020. Mark your calendars now and watch for more information on the event in upcoming newsletters.

Photo: PLPD 2019 outdoor event by Jodi Stemler.
Our Amazing Grasslands

Meet Eli Little and his family, who have find that testing new techniques on their farm and ranch not only improves their operation, it keeps things interesting. 
A New Approach to Farming Promotional

View the zippy promo created from the Eli Little video. “My brother and I have always treated opening day of pheasant season as a national holiday. There was a time there when we couldn’t find very many pheasants anymore. So we started making an effort. Right now in SD we’re supposed to have one of the lowest pheasant numbers ever…..It’s not true on our land!”
2019 Leopold Conservation Award® 
Given in honor of renowned conservationist Aldo Leopold, these awards recognize farmers and foresters in many U.S. states who inspire others with their dedication to land, water and wildlife habitat management on private, working land.

The farm and rangeland owned and managed by Bruce and Rick Rominger represents a community they love, respect, share with others and protect in perpetuity. They grow diversified crops – including wine grapes, processing tomatoes, rice and hay – in ways that protect the environment, using a full toolbox of stewardship practices and partnerships. This includes planting miles of hedgerows to benefit important pollinators like bees, restoring over 5,000 feet of stream corridors to connect riparian areas and wetlands to aid a variety of species, and managing irrigation water on their rice fields to boost declining shorebird populations.

Partner/Private Lands News
Ranching & Agriculture

The role of conservation agriculture in reducing soil erosion

Florida purchases DeSoto ranch, $6.5 million to buy land rights

Local MI farmers recognized for their efforts in farmland conservation, win conservation awards

Colorado Cattlemen's Agricultural Land Trust gets $245,000 to aid conservation of 5,250-acres E Bar Ranch

Farmers, ranchers, conservationists discuss how to save Idaho farmland

Ferry family receives Leopold Conservation Award in Utah

New York is offering a new funding opportunity for farmers, worth $14 million

Iowa Farm Bureau panel advises progressive farmers to spread the word on conservation

“Within the current paradigm of input-based agriculture, where nationally we rely on a tremendous amount of fertilizers and pesticides, we use the soil as a medium to grow crops on, rather than the digestive system to provide nutrients for the plant”-regenerative ag farmer Daniel Fullmer

Years in the making, Snohomish, WA Agriculture Resilience Plan puts science behind saving farms

Ranchland Trust of Kansas receives state's first Acres For America Grant


New England Conservation partnership protects 1,000 acres of forestland in 4 towns

Wildlife, Recreation & Education

Conservation ranching is for the birds – and the cows


Large-Scale Experiment On The Rural Olympic Peninsula of WA To Test Innovations In Forest Management

A path forward for national forests

UT AgResearch and The Nature Conservancy to partner on working woodlands

Season’s Greetings from Montana! I hope your year is finishing up strong and that you will be able to spend some time the next few weeks with the people that are important to you.

Partners for Conservation is built on the idea that people--and the communication, relationships, and partnerships that people have and develop--are the most important part of keeping our working landscapes sustainable for current and future generations. I’m happy to be able to share with you elsewhere in this issue a report on our latest Private Lands Partners Day held in Utah, which showcases just a few relationships that made 2019 a great year for conservation and for PFC. 

We are already looking forward to a very busy 2020 and hope to see many of you around the country soon and please do keep Private Lands Partners Day 2020 October 6-8 in Oregon on your calendar. Finally, thank you for all you have done for your community, your landscapes, and for conservation this year.

Happy Holidays and Take Care,
Jim Stone

Working Hard for Healthy and Fire-Safe Forestland: meet Pat and Judy McKelvey, timber producers in Jefferson County, Montana. When the couple purchased 100 acres of timbered hills, they saw both an opportunity and a retirement project. They’ve spent two years working with NRCS to clean up the property, including fuel mitigation. There were a lot of beetle-killed, dead, and downed trees and trees growing very close together, which is ladder fuel for fire to travel both from crown to crown and along the ground. After thinning and reseeding with more space between trees, the McKelveys have a more fire-safe and more aesthetically beautiful property. 

Each Friday, meet diverse farmers, producers, and landowners through #FridaysOnTheFarm stories. Visit local farms, ranches, forests, and resource areas where USDA customers and partners do right and feed everyone. 
Nature's Good Neighbors

Read more about a harmonious future for profits, pine, and at-risk species along the Florida-Alabama line, where the company Resource Management Service thinks it can produce longleaf at scale to create jobs, bolster rural economies and, hopefully, build new markets.

The US Fish and Wildlife Service launched Nature’s Good Neighbors in 2018, a series of stories showcasing conservationists across the nation, many of whom are private landowners with some on the PFC board!
Private Lands Conservation Events & Funding Announcements

Western Collaborative Conservation Network and Partners for Conservation invite you to attend the Inaugural “Confluence 2020”

March 10-12, 2020 at Colorado State University. Early Bird Registration is OPEN until Jan 10th, 2020. 

At The Confluence, members of community-based collaborative conservation groups and their partners will gather from across the West to: 
  • Connect and network with peers in interactive poster & open space sessions.
  • Convene in peer-to-peer & expert-led learning sessions to build collaboration skills and practice collaboration tools. 
  • Catalyze action in working sessions on critical regional capacity issues to build more support for on-the-ground conservation success.
Who is coming to Confluence 2020?
  • Private landowners, rural & agricultural communities
  • Tribes  
  • Business and Industry  
  • Community-Based Collaborative Conservation leaders and practitioners 
  • State, sub-regional, and national conservation organizations 
  • Local, state, & federal land management agencies
  • Academic institutions and
  • Conservation non-profits

Check out the upcoming Soil Health Academies to be held February through June 2020 in NC, CA, NM, WI, and NE! 

Photo credit below: Group shot from PLPD 2019 by Heather Johnson

Partners for Conservation (PFC) is a private landowner-led organization which communicates and collaborates on conservation partnerships for working landscapes to benefit present and future generations. 
Consider Joining Partners for Conservation
Consider becoming a member of Partners for Conservation. Partners for Conservation works to support collaboration and public-private partnerships as the first choice for conserving our national working landscapes for people and nature. More information on membership can be found on our website. 
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