Northeast Nebraska RC&D announced today that it will receive $24,134.00 from the Nebraska Environmental Trust for the “Integrated Management of Noxious Weeds in Biologically Sensitive Areas by the Northeast Nebraska Weed Management Area”. The Trust Board announced funding for the project at its meeting on April 3, 2014 in Lincoln. This is the third and final year of award. The project is one of the 132 projects receiving $21,750,000 in grant awards from the Nebraska Environmental Trust this year. Of these, 56 were new applications and 76 are carry-over projects.
Invasive species are cited frequently as significant threats to biological diversity in Nebraska’s Natural Legacy Project planning document (NNLP). To address issues with invasive species, NNLP recommended development of collaborative conservation efforts to implement strategies that address specific issues in biologically unique landscapes (BUL’s) identified in the plan. One such group is the Northeast Nebraska Weed Management Area (NNWMA). NNWMA is composed of a diverse group of partners and covers 8 counties and 4,610,212 acres of private, public, and tribal land. Eight BUL’s are partially or wholly within NNWMA boundaries. These include prairies that contain federally threatened Western Prairie Fringed Orchid and state listed Small White Lady Slipper Orchid, as well as habitats that are home to 34 other Tier 1 plant, mussel, fish, insect, bird, and mammal species.
In this project biological control agents (insects) are released to control noxious weeds on ecologically sensitive sites. The group also conducts annual education and outreach tours and workshops. Releases are prioritized and targeted at places where herbicide use is not desired. Targeted plants are Purple Loosestrife, Leafy Spurge, Salt Cedar, and non-native Phragmites. Appropriate insects are used for purple loosestrife and leafy spurge.
The Nebraska Legislature created the Nebraska Environmental Trust in 1992. Using revenue from the Nebraska Lottery, the Trust has provided over $213 million in grants to over 1,600 projects across the state. Anyone – citizens, organizations, communities, farmers and businesses – can apply for funding to protect habitat, improve water quality and establish recycling programs in Nebraska. The Nebraska Environmental Trust works to preserve, protect and restore our natural resources for future generations.
For more information about this project or any of the RC&D programs and services please contact the office at 402-582-4866 or email [email protected]
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