Wetlands restoration program signup begins
October 3, 2009
Eligible aquaculture producers, including catfish and crawfish producers, are reminded that signup continues at the Farm Service Agency Office for participation in the Farmable Wetlands Program, an important component of the Conservation Reserve Program.
Authorized incentives include a payment of $100 per acre, an incentive payment of 40 percent of the cost to establish the practice and a 120 percent rental rate.
Land eligibility for the Farmable Wetlands Program, under CRP, now includes land that was devoted to commercial pond-raised aquaculture in any year from 2002 to 2007.
Commercial pond-raised aquaculture means any earthen facility from which $1,000 or more of freshwater food fish were sold or normally would have been sold during a calendar year.
Producers must provide verification of commercial pond-raised aquaculture with supporting records such as feed purchase records, stocker purchase records, harvest and/or sales records.
Aquaculture facilities must be out of production before the effective date of an approved contract. Through FWP, the Farm Service Agency establishes 10-15 year contracts with agricultural producers.
FWP participants must agree to restore the hydrology of the wetlands, to establish vegetative cover which may include emerging vegetation in water, bottomland hardwoods, cypress and other appropriate tree species, and to the general prohibition of using of the enrolled land for commercial purposes, including crawfishing for commercial purposes.
For additional details and information on all new CRP Farmable Wetlands Program initiatives or other FSA conservation programs, contact the local FSA Office. Information is also available on the web at www.fsa.usda.gov.