Since 2018, the Knox County SWCD Wildlife Committee has been tasked with overseeing the District’s efforts to improve and expand wildlife habitat in Knox County using the following methods:
- Plan and host field days and training seminars.
- Meet with landowners to discuss habitat improvements.
- Establish relationships with wildlife organizations and bring their resources to bear on Knox County lands.
- Promote CRP, WRE, EQIP, and other programs to the wildlife/hunting community.
- Provide educational presentations to schools and civic groups.
The committee is made up of a mixture of partnership members and local community members. Twenty different people have attended committee meetings. Sixteen of these people were local community members. The majority of this group have attended over 2/3 of the monthly meetings. Occupations of these members include Conservation Officer, Doctor, Farmer, Lawyer, Wildlife Biologist, and Agronomist to name a few, all with a love of the outdoors.
A mailing list approaching 100 members receive correspondence from the committee on a regular basis.
The committee has received support from Ducks Unlimited and Lower Wabash Landscape Conservation Design (a partnership of SWCD’s, DNR’s, NRCS, Indiana University, and Illinois and Indiana landowners).
Some of the Wildlife Committee’s events include:
- “Farm the Best, Save the Rest, Options for Flood Prone Acres” was held in the White River bottoms at a local residence. Brad Smith (The Nature Conservancy) gave a presentation on the impacts of weather patterns and river flooding on farming practices followed by a tour of CRP practices along the river.
- “Winter Grain Fields as Waterfowl Habitat and Farm Income” was held at a community center along the White River. Clevie Bennett (Knox SWCD) & Tom Held (NRCS) gave a presentation on management practices for enhancing wildlife and Ray McCormick presented flooded fields for waterfowl habitat.
- “Construction, Maintenance, and Restoration of Ponds” was held at a residence in Monroe City, IN. A panel discussion was held and a survey taken to determine what the needs of the attendees were to schedule future events and/or assistance to address these individual needs for attendees.