Bid4Birds Habitat Program Updates

Bid4Birds Habitat Program Updates

Due to the dry conditions and a serious need for shorebird habitat the California Ricelands Waterbird Foundation has made two changes to its program this year to increase the flexibility for growers.

  1. The application deadline has been extended to July 1, 2021 
  2. The flooding window has been extended another month: July 15 – November 1

Water allocations for post-harvest flooding are uncertain this winter; however, the migratory birds will still be passing through. This means that flooded habitat will be even more critical this year. We are asking rice growers that are able to flood idle or planted acres, immediately after harvest, to consider applying to our Fall 2021 Bid4Birds habitat program. Applications are submitted through the Foundation website and the enrollment window is open until Thursday, July 1, 2021

Key Details:

  • Incentive payments for growers to implement shallow flooding for shorebirds
    • Payment rates vary and are requested by the grower, based on the costs of providing the habitat. 
  • Contracts: 3-4 week commitments
  • Flooding Window: July 15 through November 1
  • Flooding: maximum of 4″ throughout contract period
  • Post-harvest straw management required
  • Contracts are ranked on timing, habitat quality, and price

If you have any questions about the program or would just like to learn more, visit the Bid4Birds webpage or contact Luke Matthews at or (916) 607-8988.

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Deadline to apply for Drought Relief Waterbird Program fast approaching

Deadline to apply for Drought Relief Waterbird Program fast approaching

You have less than one week to apply for a special program to help wildlife endure the drought. The California rice industry has teamed up with the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) to fund a special $8 million Drought Relief Waterbird Program. This program seeks to create waterbird habitat through the operation of groundwater wells to winter flood rice fields for migratory birds. The program will be rolled out on an expedited timeframe, given the rice harvest schedule this year.