Conservation

Temporary Adjustment to Water Transfer Policy for Land Enrolled in 2021 Nesting Program

Temporary Adjustment to Water Transfer Policy for Land Enrolled in 2021 Nesting Program

The Department of Water Resources (Department) and the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) put out a statement last week that applies to water transfers in 2021. This statement applies only to farmers enrolled in the California Ricelands Waterbird Foundation’s Nesting Habitat Program and, in summary, allows farmers that are transferring water to leave vegetation on their transfer fields.  The statement is as follows: 

“Participation in the California Ricelands Waterbird Foundation’s Nesting Habitat Program will not disqualify a farmer from also participating in a 2021 cropland idling water transfer program”

This is a welcomed temporary modification of the transfer policy and it only applies to transfers during 2021, after which the Department and Reclamation will re-evaluate. Additional details of the agreement stipulate that growers participating in both programs this season will not be allowed to irrigate their idle fields after April 1s and they cannot have any seepage into the transfer fields. In July, after the Nesting Program is over, the Department and Reclamation will determine what must be done with the remaining vegetation on the fields. 

If you have questions about how these two programs can work together please contact Luke Matthews, CRC’s Wildlife Program Manager, lmatthews@calrice.org or 916-607-8988. 

More Conservation Stories

Time is running out to sign up your Eligible Idled Rice Acres

Time is running out to sign up your Eligible Idled Rice Acres

The California Ricelands Waterbird Foundation (Foundation) is looking for rice acres that will be left fallow this growing season and that currently have cover crops or other eligible volunteer plants on them. Enrolled farmers will receive payments to leave their fields undisturbed for the waterfowl nesting season (through July 1) and allow the Foundation and its project partners access to monitor nesting activity. 

READ MORE
New Program for Nesting Habitat Projects on Idled Rice Acres

New Program for Nesting Habitat Projects on Idled Rice Acres

Any rice grower that is planning to idle rice acres this growing season, the California Ricelands Waterbird Foundation (Foundation) might have a program opportunity. The Foundation is currently soliciting applications for rice fields that can provide quality nesting cover for waterfowl. We are interested in rice fields that will be idled this summer that currently have cover crops or other eligible volunteer plants on them. This Program pays rice farmers to leave their fields undisturbed for the waterfowl nesting season (through July 1) and allow the Foundation and its project partners access to monitor nesting activity. 

READ MORE