Educational efforts will focus on supporting The Soil and Water Conservation Department priorities and goals: Improving groundwater and surface water quality, creating awareness of conservation stewardship efforts being implemented, County Ordinance requirements, State Standards for compliance of Farmland Preservation Program income tax credit, incentives and cost share availability for installation of conservation practices and many other environmental topics to enhance the quality of our natural resources. Manitowoc County Soil and Water Conservation Department, in partnership with Natural Resources Conservation Service and University of Wisconsin Extension, will educate farmers on the importance of healthy soil and water quality and promote the implementation of best management practices to improve soil health and water quality.
In the News!
Nitrate Screening for Manitowoc County Residents
During the Manitowoc County Fair, the Soil and Water Conservation Department and Home and Community Education performed 160 water tests for private well owners in Manitowoc County. Of those, 64% were within natural nitrate levels found in the environment, 22% indicated some sort of human influence to the water, and 14% exceeded the drinking water standard for nitrates. A special thanks goes to all HCE members who volunteered to provide this service to our community!
Breakfast on the Farm
Habeck Homestead Farms LLC hosted Breakfast on the Farm on June 11th. It was a beautiful day with 4,500 people in attendance! The Soil and Water Conservation Department staffed a booth during the event and educated visitors about all the neat conservation efforts the farm is working on including: participation in the Groundwater Initiative, following a Nutrient Management Plan, participating in the Agricultural Recycling program, and much more. Visitors learned about soil health, groundwater vulnerabilities in the region, and Farmland Preservation Programming.
Habecks Family Photo: (Back- left to right) Matthew Fidler, Lee Fidler, Ann Habeck, Leanne Habeck, Lexie Habeck, Dawn Habeck, and Tom Landt; (Middle- left to right) Katie Kreye, Kathy Fidler, Kyle Habeck, Yvonne Habeck, Kevin Habeck, Keith Habeck, and Kim Landt; (Front- left to right) Ian Habeck, Grace Habeck, Janae Habeck, and Leyna Habeck. (Not shown in picture) Jennifer Fidler and Alec Hoffman.
Amanda Cordova, Manitowoc County Soil and Water Conservation Department Education Coordinator
Earth Day at the YMCA
The Earth Day/Healthy Kids event that was held at the YMCA on Saturday, April, 29th, 2017 was a success! Over 45 children stopped at the SWCD booth to make honey bees out of toilet paper rolls.
Soil Health and Cover Crop Forum a Success!
Attending the Second Annual Soil Health and Cover Crop Forum on March 22, 2017 were 110 farmers, seed dealers, teachers and students. Speakers from UW-Extension, Natural Resource Service, Manure Applicator Companies, and the Soil and Water Conservation Department gave educational presentations. Attendees learned about goal-setting, cover crop strategies, soil microbial research, and much more.
On-going Educational Events
Nutrient Management Farmer Education
An NMFE grant is provided by the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection with the purpose of providing farmers educational opportunities regarding nutrient management. The program is co-conducted by the Soil and Water Conservation Department staff, UW Extension, Discovery Farms and Natural Resource Conservation Services. The curriculum is state-approved for nutrient management training and consists of two or more classroom sessions, farm visits, and on farm manure spreader calibrations. Participants are qualified to prepare their own farm nutrient plan upon completion.
Conservation Education Incorporated
The Soil and Water Conservation Department provides environmental education for area educators. The Soil and Water Conservation Department staff offer classes on soils and resource conservation.
Presentations and Field Days
Several presentations and Field Days are held every year to encourage conservation practices among farmers and the general community.
Farm Wisconsin Discovery Center
Farm Wisconsin's goal is to provide education through discovery. Their mission is to educate the community about where their food comes from and how it is sustainably and ethically grown. The Soil and Water Conservation Department, in partnership with Lakeshore Natural Resource Partnership, UW-Extension, and Saxon Homestead Farms, were actively involved in the Common Ground Exhibit Development for Farm Wisconsin Discover Center.
It is the policy of Manitowoc County to comply with the equal opportunity policy and standards of the Wisconsin Department of Children and Families, the Department of Health Services and the Department of Workforce Development and all applicable state and federal statutes and regulations relating to nondiscrimination in employment and service delivery.