Wildlife habitat deadline is April 23 The Wildlife Habitat Incentives Program (WHIP) is a voluntary program for people who want to develop and improve wildlife habitat. The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) offers participants technical and financial assistance for the establishment of wildlife habitat development practices. Some the eligible practices include: wildlife shelterbelts, wildlife grass plantings, riparian buffer strips, and wildlife watering facilities.
The NRCS, along with the conservation district, helps prepare a wildlife habitat development plan that describes the landowner's goals for improving wildlife habitat. Producers interested can apply to receive up to 75 percent cost share for installing wildlife habitat practices. The WHIP agreement generally lasts from five to 10 years.
Applications can be taken anytime, but for this go-around they must be in to the NRCS office by April 23 for evaluation. Priority is being placed on tree and grass plantings for nesting and winter habitat. Other wildlife practices are still eligible. Contact the NRCS at 605-624-7060 (ext. 2) for further program details and sign-up information.