NB_290_19_2 - NB 290-19-2 INV – Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) Conservation Insight on “Private Landowner Response to NRCS Young Forest Programs”
NB 290-19-2 INV – Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) Conservation Insight on “Private Landowner Response to NRCS Young Forest Programs”
National Bulletin: 290-19-2 Date: December 17, 2018
Subject: INV – Conservation Effects Assessment Project (CEAP) Conservation Insight on “Private Landowner Response to NRCS Young Forest Programs”


   
 
Purpose.  To announce the availability of a CEAP-Wildlife Conservation Insight, "Private Landowner Response to NRCS Young Forest Programs."   
 
Expiration Date.  September 30, 2019
 
Background.  CEAP Conservation Insights are reports of studies that summarize CEAP findings and that have program implications. Conservation Insights are available on the CEAP website at http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/main/national/technical/nra/ceap/.
 
Explanation.  The Working Lands for Wildlife’s (WLFW) Golden-winged Warbler Habitat effort through NRCS in the Appalachian States and a Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) partnership between American Bird Conservancy and NRCS in the upper Great Lakes States aim to create and restore young forest habitat on private lands for wildlife species of conservation concern.

An assessment was conducted to evaluate the social aspects of these NRCS programs by studying participating landowner experiences and postprogram management intentions. Key findings include the following:

• Landowners had a diverse range of motivations for participating in the habitat programs. Top landowner motivations were benefiting forest health, benefiting birds that use young forest, receiving access to expert advice, and improving hunting opportunities.

• With few exceptions, the habitat programs appear successful in fulfilling landowner motivations for participation. Landowners had generally positive perceptions of program outcomes, high levels of trust in NRCS and agency partners, and high satisfaction with the program.

• Landowners were broadly interested in continuing management of young forest after program participation, either by reenrolling in NRCS programs or through management without further cost-share assistance.

• Landowner intentions to reenroll in similar NRCS programs were best predicted by high trust in NRCS and partners and by high importance of cost sharing, environmental concerns, and improving hunting opportunities. High satisfaction with the program and possession of a written forest management plan were also associated with higher intentions to reenroll.

• Landowner intentions to continue young forest management without further cost sharing were best predicted by high importance of cost sharing and environmental concerns and by group ownership (e.g., club, association, or nonprofit).

• More landowners were interested in postprogram use of management practices associated with habitat maintenance (e.g., herbicide use, brush clearing) than practices needed for habitat creation (e.g., harvesting or burning timber to create new patches).

• Landowners who accompanied biological technicians on monitoring site visits had higher trust in the agency and more positive perceptions of program outcomes.

• Mailing bird monitoring results to landowners did not improve their perceptions of program outcomes or agency trust but did improve their knowledge of the birds.
 
Contact.  If you have any questions, please contact Charles Rewa, CEAP-Wildlife component leader, at charles.rewa@wdc.usda.gov or (301) 504-2326.
 
 

 /s/

SHARIF BRANHAM
Acting Deputy Chief for Soil Science and Resource Assessment

 
 
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