FWC ISSUES NEW EXECUTIVE ORDER OUTLINING NEW HUNTING REGULATIONS FOR CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE MANAGEMENT ZONE
Following confirmation of a positive test sample for chronic wasting disease (CWD) in Holmes County in June 2023, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) and Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) have implemented management actions to protect against the possible spread of CWD. On Sept. 8, the FWC issued a new executive order outlining regulations designed to increase sampling and slow the spread of CWD in Florida deer. Existing regulations pertaining to the establishment of the zone, baiting and feeding restrictions, prohibition of rehabilitating or releasing injured or orphaned deer and export of high-risk parts remain in effect. See the new FWC regulations here.
Two upcoming public meetings will provide information about chronic wasting disease, updates on the unified agency and partner response, new hunting regulations for the area, sampling and testing procedures, and an opportunity for area residents to ask questions about CWD and CWD management strategies. Details for the public meetings are as follows:
Tuesday, September 19, 2023; 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. (CDT), Bonifay K-8 School Auditorium, 140 Blue Devil Drive, Bonifay, FL 32425
Tuesday, October 10, 2023; 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. (CDT), Rivertown Community Church Auditorium, 4535 Lafayette Street, Marianna, FL 32446
TALL TIMBERS PROVIDING FUNDING AND TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE TO LANDOWNERS IN ST. MARKS AND AUCILLA RIVER BASINS
Apply by November 4 in Georgia and November 17 in Florida
Landowners within the basins of the St. Marks and Aucilla Rivers, including portions of Leon, Jefferson, Wakulla, Madison and Taylor counties in Florida, and Brooks, Thomas and Grady counties in Georgia, can apply for funding and technical assistance for prescribed fire implementation, longleaf pine tree establishment, timber stand improvements, invasive plant treatment and wildlife habitat improvement. More details about Tall Timbers assistance here.
SUMMER 2023 ISSUE OF “FIRE IN THE PINES” NEWSLETTER NOW AVAILABLE
See what’s new with the North Florida Prescribed Burn Association. Useful tips, upcoming events, and more news in this issue. Remember, those hardwoods come back angry!
Summer 2023 Fire in the Pines Newsletter
HURRICANE IDALIA EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE: USDA NRCS ENCOURAGES LANDOWNERS TO APPLY FOR ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY INCENTIVES PROGRAM
Apply by November 17, 2023
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) can provide assistance, through Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) conservation practices, to help agricultural landowners and producers address disaster related resource concerns on their land. EQIP can repair and prevent soil erosion, as well as address water quality issues or other resource concerns resulting from high rainfall events and flooding. See details about Hurricane Idalia emergency EQIP here.
More Hurricane Recovery Resources
See the recent Hurricane Preparation and Recovery blog post for helpful links and recent hurricane preparation and recovery webinar recordings.
FEMA has a website dedicated to Hurricane Idalia recovery assistance: https://www.fema.gov/disaster/current/hurricane-idalia.
USDA Disaster Assistance
USDA offers a variety of programs to help farmers, ranchers, forest landowners, communities, and businesses that have been hard hit by natural disaster events. Visit farmers.gov for all USDA programs that can help agricultural producers recover.
The Emergency Conservation Program and Emergency Forest Restoration Program are authorized can assist landowners and forest stewards with financial and technical assistance to restore damaged farmland or forests.
USDA also offers disaster assistance programs important to livestock, fruit and vegetable, specialty and perennial crop producers who have fewer risk management options. See farmers.gov for additional USDA programs that can help with recovery.
Farm loans: USDA Farm Service Agency offers a variety of loans available including emergency loans that are triggered by disaster declarations and operating loans that can assist producers with credit needs. You can use these loans to replace essential property, purchase inputs like livestock, equipment, feed and seed, or refinance farm-related debts, and other needs.
Documentation: It’s critical to keep accurate records to document all losses following a devastating weather event. Producers are advised to document by taking time and date-stamped video or pictures prior to and after the loss. Other common documentation options include purchase records, production records, vaccination records, bank or other loan documents, and third-party certification.
More storms are brewing. Keep an eye on the tropics at the NOAA Hurricane Center.
USDA EXTENDS DEADLINE FOR EMERGENCY CONSERVATION PROGRAM IN 28 COUNTIES AFFECTED BY HURRICANE IAN
Apply by September 25
The USDA Farm Service Agency’s Emergency Conservation Program (ECP) provides financial assistance to producers to help restore farmland to pre-disaster conditions. Approved ECP applicants may receive up to 75 percent of the cost of an approved restoration activity. Limited resource producers, socially disadvantaged participants and beginning farmers and ranchers may receive up to 90 percent cost-share.
The approved ECP practices under this authorization for Hurricane Ian recovery include: removing debris from farmland; grading, shaping, releveling, or similar measures: replacing or repairing permanent fences; and restoring conservation structures and other installations.
The approved counties for ECP signup are Brevard, Broward, Charlotte, Clay, Collier, DeSoto, Flagler, Glades, Hardee, Hendry, Highlands, Hillsborough, Indian River, Lake, Lee, Manatee, Martin, Okeechobee, Orange, Osceola, Palm Beach, Polk, Putnam, Sarasota, Seminole, St. Johns, St. Lucie, and Volusia. For more details see the USDA ECP Website. Find your USDA Service Center here.
CONGRATULATIONS TERRY AND HOWARD PUTNAL: 2023 FLORIDA JON GOULD OUTSTANDING TREE FARMER OF THE YEAR!
The Florida Tree Farm Program is proud to recognize Mr. Terry Putnal and, his father, Howard Putnal (in memoriam) as the 2023 Jon Gould Florida Outstanding Tree Farmer of the Year. Watch the 2023 Florida Jon Gould Outstanding Tree Farmer video here.
ENROLL IN ONLINE FOREST LANDOWNER ACADEMY
Are you new to forestry and land management? Need a good primer on forest management concepts and next steps? Hard to fit travel for tours and workshops in your busy schedule? Need a course in a self-paced format that you can take on your own time? This course is for you! Forest landowners, and others in need of forest management information, are encouraged to enroll in this self-paced, online course to connect with forest management experts at the University of Florida and receive quality core educational content on forestry and multiple-use stewardship concepts.
The 7 course modules cover a variety of topics on understanding your forest resources, developing your management plan, timber management, marketing forest products, other forest enterprises such as pine straw and hunting leases, wildlife management, and planning for the future. Each module includes recorded video from the field or virtual classroom, links to references, and an assessment where you can apply what you’ve learned to your land or situation. The cost of the course is $150. Those completing the course will earn a University of Florida Certificate of Completion.
See and share course details in the Forest Landowner Academy blog post.
Direct link to enroll in the Forest Landowner Academy:
Questions about the course can be directed to Chris Demers, email@example.com, (352) 846-2375.
GET FLORIDA LAND STEWARD EMAIL UPDATES
Don’t miss out on news and events! Sign up for the regular email updates! Send an email to Chris at firstname.lastname@example.org to be added to the email listserv. Florida Land Steward email updates are sent once a week or every other week and include the latest calendar of workshops, tours and other events; a link to the current issue of the quarterly Florida Land Steward newsletter; updates on cost-share and other assistance programs, opportunities, and resources; and other stewardship related news and information.
See our Events Calendar and News page for upcoming events and ongoing programs, initiatives, and opportunities.
ACCESS THE QUARTERLY FLORIDA LAND STEWARD NEWSLETTER ONLINE
Access the current and back issues of the quarterly Florida Land Steward newsletter here.
HAVE AN EVENT OR RELATED NEWS TO SHARE?
Drop a line with the details and link(s) to Chris at email@example.com.
CONSIDER A GIFT IN SUPPORT OF THE UF/IFAS FLORIDA LAND STEWARD PROGRAM
The mission of the UF/IFAS Florida Land Steward Program is to help and encourage private landowners to actively manage their land resources for long-term environmental, economic, and social benefits. This program is largely supported by partners and donors. If this program has made a difference in your land stewardship efforts, please consider a gift. Support the UF/IFAS Florida Land Steward Program here. Thanks!