The Indiana Department of Natural Resources Division of Fish and Wildlife has landed funding that will contribute to a new grassland and pollinator habitat development program to benefit private landowners.

The Grasslands for Gamebirds and Songbirds initiative will employ three full-time “grassland biologists” who will provide technical and financial assistance to private landowners hoping to improve their properties by developing grassland and pollinator habitat throughout focal regions of the state. This habitat development will benefit species such as bobwhite quail, ring-necked pheasant, Henslow’s sparrow and loggerhead shrike.

The Indiana DNR was selected for the funding through the Regional Conservation Partnership Program, which is administered by the Natural Resources Conservation Service. Once implemented, it will total $1 million. The total budget of the GGS initiative is $1.83 million. The other funding for the initiative has been contributed from the initiative’s 33 partners.

“Through the RCPP project, Indiana landowners will receive assistance to install practices such as native grasses, pollinators, prescribed burns, tree plantings and invasive species control that will increase declining bird populations,” said Jane Hardisty, Indiana NRCS’s state conservationist.

Landowners interested in participating in the GGS initiative, or those who would like to support the effort, can visit wildlife.IN.gov/ 9467.htm. For more information, visit dnr.IN.gov or contact Josh Griffin, private lands program manager with DNR Fish and Wildlife, at 317-234-9737 or jgriffin@dnr.IN.gov.

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