North Dakota farmers and ranchers in two priority areas are able apply for financial assistance to convert their expiring Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) land into a rotational grazing system. The Working Grasslands Partnership will offer assistance for grazing infrastructure, such as water development and fencing.

The partnership was established through a grant from the North Dakota Outdoor Heritage Fund to the North Dakota Natural Resources Trust.

CRP acres are limited, so reenrolling in CRP is not an option for many landowners, said Dane Buysse, a conservation specialist with Ducks Unlimited, which is contributing to the program and working to get the word out to landowners. This working lands program will allow farmers and ranchers to use their CRP cover efficiently in a rotational grazing system practice.

The Working Grasslands Partnership is offering technical assistance for developing grazing systems and financial assistance to put the infrastructure on the ground. The cost-share options for landowners include water wells, pipelines and rural water hookups, as well as boundary fencing and cross-fencing. The limited grant funds are available to landowners in North Dakota's Missouri Coteau and the southwestern part of the state.

Additional contributing partners include North Dakota conservation district farm program biologists, Pheasants Forever and U.S. Fish and Wildlife private land biologists.

If you would like more information, contact one of Ducks Unlimiteds conservation program biologists: Dane Buysse at 425-4852, or Tanner Gue at 595-6945,