• 70°

Incentives given to farmers who enhance wildlife

VIDALIA — With the Gulf of Mexico oil spill threatening marshes in south Louisiana, conservation officials are looking to find ways to get migratory wildlife to stay in the Miss-Lou.

A new program offering incentive payments for farmers who enhance farmland for wildlife has been started, and Concordia Parish has been designated as a priority area, Natural Resources Conservation Service District Conservationist Ben Taunton said.

“The idea is they will enhance that duck habitat by doing some conservation practices that provide food and water to try to keep (migratory birds) from getting in the oil in the marshes,” Taunton said.

Areas that are eligible for the program include wetlands that are being farmed and cropland that has previously been converted to wetlands, and information provided by the NRCS notes that rice fields are particularly suited to the task.

Most shorebirds forage for food in shallow water — less than 4 inches deep — and waterfowl tend to look for food in water that is less than a foot deep.

One of the practices the program looks to use to attract the migratory birds to the area is by keeping fields flooded under shallow water for longer periods of time, Taunton said.

“If they start these practices in the next few months we hope to have these habitats in this area ready for when these birds show up,” he said.

And even if the birds initially bypass the local habitats, Taunton said the fields still need to be ready.

“The goal is to give them an opportunity to stop and even if they get to the marsh, they come back here,” he said. “It gives them more food sources and opportunities up and down the flyways.”

The NRCS initiative is being applied in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana Mississippi, Missouri and Texas.

News

Pascagoula native 1st female official to work a Super Bowl

News

Analysis: Transition turmoil splits Mississippi delegation

COVID-19

Sunday update: State health department reports new COVID-19 cases, deaths

COVID-19

State health department reports new COVID-19 cases, deaths

News

Merit Health nurse remembered for selfless nature

News

Florida couple start fundraiser to secure, restore historic home here

News

Two men arrested for theft, damage at old International Paper

News

Legislative forum is Monday at Natchez Convention Center

News

Natchez projects awarded over $350,000 from MDAH grants

BREAKING NEWS

Sheriff’s office investigating shots fired in Adams County Wednesday night

BREAKING NEWS

Natchez police arrested teen in Wednesday night murder

News

More donate to Children’s Christmas Tree fund

News

Murder investigation of Natchez native now streaming on Discovery+

News

Harbor Freight Tools excited to be joining Natchez community

News

Supervisors approve contract for new engineering firm

COVID-19

State reports new COVID-19 cases, deaths

News

Adams County seeks study for new fire stations

News

Jackson State band to perform in Biden inauguration event

COVID-19

Bailey appointed interim tax collector until November special election

News

Supervisors reappoint Phillip West to Natchez school board

News

Harbor Freight showing job listings for new Natchez location

COVID-19

Coroner: Two more people died with COVID-19 Sunday at Merit Health Natchez

News

CPSO deputy finds his dog shot in his backyard

News

Missing teen found