Bill R. Fuller, State Director of the USDA Kansas Farm Service Agency (FSA) announced today that certain acreage enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is available for haying and grazing after the primary nesting season.
"This authorization provides relief for many Kansas livestock producers," Fuller says. "The high price and demand of commodities has significantly impacted the Kansas livestock industry."
More than 2.5 million acres of CRP land in Kansas will be eligible for this critical feed use.
CRP acreage in all Kansas counties that is fully established and devoted to the following CRP practices will be eligible:
• CP1, Established Permanent Grasses and Legumes
• CP2, Established Permanent Native Grasses
• CP4B, Permanent Wildlife Habitat - Corridors
• CP4D, Permanent Wildlife Habitat
• CP10, Vegetative Cover
• CP18B, Established Permanent Vegetation to Reduce Salinity
• CP18C, Established Permanent Salt Tolerant Vegetative Cover
Participants must leave at least 50% of eligible CRP acreage unhayed for wildlife. Grazing can be conducted at 75% of the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) recommended stocking rate on 100% of the eligible acres or at 100% of the stocking rate on 75% of the eligible acres.
Environmentally sensitive land such as wetlands, buffers, and filter strips are not eligible for haying or grazing, along with acreage with useful life easements and land within 120 feet of a permanent water body.
Haying and grazing cannot begin until July 16, 2008 and must end by November 10, 2008. Haying and grazing is not allowed on the same acreage. Hay and livestock must be removed from the field by November 10, 2008.
CRP participants may sell the hay, or use their CRP acreage for their own use or lease to any other individual.
No payment reduction will be assessed, but CRP participants will be required to pay a $75 fee per contract to modify their contract to allow haying and grazing in 2008.
CRP participants should contact the local FSA county office to have their CRP contract modified to allow haying or grazing on an individual contract basis. Participants will work with the NRCS to develop a forage management plan. If the CRP cover is destroyed, the practice must be re-established at the participant's expense to remain in compliance with the CRP contract.