Conservation can pay
Skip Newman, who runs a family ranch about 50 miles
west of Great Falls, Mont., recently fenced off the banks of Muddy
Creek, drilled a well and set up water troughs away from the stream
for his cows. "There is an erosion and water quality problem, and I
just wanted to do my part," Newman says. "All the people living
downstream will benefit in some way." Newman won't be paying for
the projects by himself. The most recent Farm Bill allows the
government to pick up 75 percent of the tab. Its Environmental
Quality Incentives Program is one of more than 20 projects that
offer more than $2.5 billion in subsidies to farmers and ranchers.
A guide to help landowners and wildlife managers apply for some of
these programs is available from the Wildlife Management Institute.
It's called the Wildlife Manager's Field Guide to the Farm Bill,
and the 44-page publication is $4 from the Wildlife Management
Institute, 1101 14th St. NW, Suite 801, Washington, D.C. 20005