Jane Hardisty, state conservationist in Indiana for the Natural Resources Conservation Service, announced today that USDA has granted Indiana an additional $100,000 in EQIP funds for livestock producers. The intent is to help producers in drought-stricken Indiana gear up to intensively manage alternative fall forages, including corn and soybean stubble.
That’s the good news. The catch is that funds must be allocated by this Friday, September 14. So interested producers need to contact their NRCS field office, or talk directly with their district NRCS soil conservationist, immediately to get the ball rolling. That’s only a two-day window to avoid missing out on this opportunity.
Jerry Perkins, northern Indiana forage specialist with NRCS, says producers can greatly improve efficiency and stretch forage supplies longer this fall if they intensively graze corn or soybean fields, instead of turning livestock loose on the entire field at once. He envisions a system similar to what producers use in intensive grass systems, only on a temporary basis. Producers would need to fence off two to three acres of corn stalks or bean stubble at one time, and provide water for livestock grazing those small areas.
According to a release issued by the Indiana Beef Cattle Association to alert members about this opportunity, practices that can be funded include temporary fencing, watering facilities for livestock, and seeding of cover crops.
If you have additional questions, the Indiana state NRCS office will field additional questions at 317-290-3200.