How do we accelerate the planting of riparian forest buffers?
All the states in the Chespaeake Bay watershed are falling behind their targets for excluding livestock from streams and planting riparian forest buffers.
I’ve spent a lifetime “getting more on the ground” and I want to share how we made it happen in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. It’s in this book, and it’s free.
We have to sell conservation from the farmer’s perspective not ours.
I’ve never had a farmer tell me he installed riparian forest buffers because they wanted to sequester more carbon, or create pollinator corridors. The most important part of the buffer system from the livestock farmer’s perspective is the watering system. Improving herd health and removing livestock from “calving risk” areas are high on their list as well.
Streams flowing through forested buffers are 2 to 8 times more capable of processing in-stream pollutants.
Find out why a stream flowing through a forested buffer is 2 to 8 times more capable of processing in stream pollutants…download the book…it’s free.
This book was made possible by a grant from the Campbell Foundation and the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.
In his e-book, Bobby shares his invaluable knowledge and findings drawn from years of field experience. His tips for how to improve water quality and protect livestock are a true win/win. Please read it. And please share it.
Riparian buffers along the Middle River on one of our farms.
We enrolled in two programs that helped us install fencing, alternative livestock watering facilities and wildlife habitat.
Great job. If I had cows I would do this. Proud of you and your work.
Riparian buffers are particularly interesting to me in that they’re so easy to create and add a ton of benefit to the environment. They are especially useful for reducing the amount of fecal coli-form in streams which is a huge problem in areas with large cattle production. I remember reading this e-book when I was doing my senior capstone project last semester and remember it being a huge help in explaining how a riparian buffer works.
Matt, thanks for your kind words and for your work with Dr. Goodall. They have signed up for CREP on the farm you worked on.
I have planted miles of forested riparian buffers in Delaware County, NY. These projects were funded through WAC and NRCS; I was a private contractor doing the installation. NRCS funded these projects for the obvious benefits that buffers provide; yet, an additional benefit was the permanent change in land use from just excluding the cattle. After the CREP contracts expire, the landowner isn’t likely to reclaim these areas for pasture, so a permanent shift in land use is realized.
I found that quality planning is required by the agency personnel, it requires field visits with a dibble bar to insure that adequate soil conditions exist. Plant selection is critical also, species should be selected for their ability to withstand competition, not because they would be neat to plant.
Thank you, Nicholas. All good recommendations.
Excited to read more.
Zack, I hope you enjoy the book.