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Conservation INsight
June 10, 2020
SAVE THE DATE: Indiana Staff and Supervisor Training
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ISDA and IASWCD are hosting three Virtual Trainings on Tuesday evenings beginning August 25 for Indiana District Staff and Supervisors. 

Three Tuesdays, three topics. Attend one, two or all three! Registration is required and will open in a few weeks.

New ICP Reports Website
Check out the new ICP reports website! This site provides details regarding conservation in each individual Indiana district. At this site, you can download consolidated single-page information pertaining to a district for use in presentations or provide for county officials to show funding and conservation implementation, including load reductions and land use.
Spring addition of The Resource Now Available
This edition of The Resource includes updates on the ways NACD, its partners and its member conservation districts have adapted in the face of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. The publication features a letter from NACD’s Executive Board detailing the national association’s response, resources for conservation districts and how you can support NACD as we look ahead.

2020 IDEA Fall Conference Update
The IDEA Directors will be meeting late in June to discuss options regarding the annual IDEA Conference currently scheduled for October in Muncie, Indiana. Please be aware that if the conference proceeds as planned, the registration timeline will be shorter than usual.
Photo Contest Highlights Indiana Agriculture
submit by June 30
INDIANAPOLIS (June 1, 2020) — The Indiana State Department of Agriculture is now accepting submissions for the 13th annual Indiana Agriculture  Photo Contest . The contest is open to Indiana residents and was created to recognize the hard work and contributions of Hoosier farmers, as well as the beauty of the state’s agricultural landscape. “Indiana has some of the most breathtaking views and unique areas, and this contest is the perfect opportunity to showcase what you find most beautiful about our great state,” said Lt. Governor Crouch.
Indiana Conservation Program Awarded $500,000
INDIANAPOLIS (June 8, 2020) — The Indiana  Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program  (CREP) announced today it was awarded a grant totaling $500,000. This funding was provided from a legal settlement that was stewarded in part by the  Indiana Wildlife Federation.  These dollars will be used to increase the number of soil conservation practices in Indiana and improve water quality in watersheds located across the state. CREP is a partnership between the United States Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency and the Indiana State Department of Agriculture. 
5 Steps to Complete After Spring Planting
By Cassie Bable, FPAC-BC Public Affairs Specialist·May 21, 2020
As #Plant2020 wraps up in Indiana, it’s time to think about next steps on your farm.
Your USDA team understands that the real work continues after planting. We know the rest of spring and summer will be spent scouting crops, irrigating or waiting for timely rains for your non-irrigated fields, and monitoring weed and insect pressure.
Ask the Expert: An Online Conservation Planning Resource Q&A with Mike Henderson
By Mike Henderson, Iowa NRCS State Agronomist·May 26, 2020
Ask the Expert is a new series launching on  farmers.gov . In this Ask the Expert, Mike Henderson answers a few questions about online conservation planning resources.
USDA Offers Assistance for Proper Disposal of Depopulated Livestock and Poultry in Indiana
Assistance is available from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to help Indiana agricultural producers properly dispose of livestock and poultry that were depopulated because of impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic. USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Indiana is accepting applications for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) for the Emergency Animal Mortality Management practice on a continuous basis. 
Indiana Farmers Can Now Apply for Financial Assistance through USDA’s Coronavirus Food Assistance Program
Agricultural producers can now apply for USDA’s Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP), which provides direct payments to offset impacts from the coronavirus pandemic. The application and a payment calculator are now available online, and USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) staff members are available via phone, fax and online tools to help producers complete applications. Producers in search of one-on-one support with the CFAP application process can call 877-508-8364 to speak directly with an FSA employee ready to offer assistance. 
Turkey Brood Survey: Observe and Share
Can you think of a spot where you usually see wild turkey broods (hens and poults) in the summer? These observations help Indiana DNR biologists calculate the annual wild turkey Production Index (number of poults per adult hens). The Production Index helps estimate wild turkey populations in the state and provides guidance for future management. DNR biologists can’t collect brood observations across the state alone. In order to reach the goal of 3,000 observations this year, they need our help! If you’re interested in sharing your turkey brood observations with DNR, visit on.IN.gov/turkeybrood and register after June 10. Record observations any time from July 1 to August 31, 2020. Recording observations takes less than 5 minutes. 
Other News
AFT Releases Farm Report
On May 20, American Farmland Trust (AFT) released a new publication, "Farms Under Threat: The State of the States." This groundbreaking report reveals that 11 million acres of agricultural land were paved over, fragmented, or converted to uses that compromise agriculture between 2001 and 2016, an area equal to all the farmland devoted to fruit, nut and vegetable production in 2017. Of these 11 million acres, more than 4 million were converted to urban and other highly developed uses, while nearly 7 million acres went to low-density residential land use.
This report also shows the location and quality of each state's agricultural land. Additionally, an “Agricultural Land Protection Scorecard” was created for each state that evaluates their policies and programs for protecting and retaining agricultural land.
ALP Golf Benefit
August 27 @ 12:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Hillview Country Club, Franklin, IN
Check out the Xerces Society YouTube Channel. There you will find webinars on bees, other pollinators, fireflies and more!
Forestry Grant Funds Available
The Indiana Forestry Educational Foundation (IFEF) is pleased to announce the availability of competitive grant funds to help educate and inform woodland owners and/or the public about forestry, woodland management and other Indiana forestry related topics, with a special interest in young forest projects. The opportunity for award of IFEF grants, which are available up to $500, and up to $1000 awards for young forest projects, are available for consideration to those organizations submitting an online application by  September 13, 2020.
Indiana State Fair is Cancelled
article by Amie Simpson, Brownfield Ag News (June 4, 2020) - The traditional Indiana State Fair has been cancelled because of the coronavirus pandemic, according to fair officials. The Indiana State Fair Commission and the Indiana State Fair Board announced that a modified State Fair 4-H Livestock Show with additional activities will take place at the fairgrounds in August. Indiana State Fair Commission Chairman Brad Chambers says key elements including vendors and partners began “falling off” so fair officials “pivoted” and found a way to still serve the community.
Indiana Land Resource Council Brownbag Conversation: Pollinator-Friendly Solar
This YouTube recording discusses the idea and benefits of scalable pollinator habitats in and around solar panels. It begins with Seth Harden from The Nature Conservancy and includes Rob Davis (Fresh Energy, Center for Pollinators in Energy), Brock Harpur (Purdue University), Chris Kline (Cardno), Leah Thill (MACOG), Debbie Seib (The Beekeepers of Indiana), and Ryan Owen (Pheasants Forever).
Job Postings  :
Current list of Conservation Job Opportunities now posted on the  IASWCD website.

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  :
June 12 - River Friendly Farmer Award Applications due
June 13 - Weed Wrangle, Mississinewa Lake 
August 19 - River Friendly Farmer Awards Ceremony
August 28 - Big Pine Creek Watershed Project
October 5-8 - IDEA Fall Conference, Muncie, IN

For a complete list of upcoming conservation events and more details about the above listed,  go to the Events Calendar on the IASWCD website. *

* Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, events are changing daily. Please check the individual hosting organization's website and/or Facebook page for the latest information on cancellations and reschedule dates. Thank you.