Streambank stabilization money available
The USDA and Natural Resource Conservation Service are teaming with Kansas Forest Service on a streambank stabilization project in Marion, McPherson and Rice counties.
If a producer’s land has a creek or stream, he may be eligible for up to 90 percent cost share to restore and protect the riparian area, said Matt Meyerhoff, supervisory district conservationist for NRCS in Marion.
A streambank, called a riparian zone, is a strip of land adjacent to a creek or stream. Healthy riparian strips act as natural filters, protecting water from excessive sediment, erosion and possible contaminated surface water.
If the area, damaged or not, is deemed eligible, the agencies will stabilize the bank, sloping it to accommodate native tree rows and seeding with a mixture of native grasses.
Measures are taken to help the streambank heal and restore itself. The creek can be fenced, keeping livestock and wildlife from further damaging the area.
Meyerhoff said if a producer is willing to fence off the water, the program would provide alternative water sources.
The large project is a couple of months old and not many people have taken advantage of it, Meyerhoff said.
“Less sediment, less chemical, less nutrients lost” will improve general recreation and reduce the need for more water filtration, he said.
Information can be obtained from the NRCS office.