Forestry field day set for Nov. 15
Are you having streambank erosion control issues? Do you have areas of honeylocust and hedge along your creeks that you'd like to convert into quality oak and walnut? Are you a hunter or wildlife watcher looking to increase opportunities on your land?
If you answered "yes" to any of these questions, you will definitely benefit from the Nov. 15, "John Redmond Riparian Forestry Field Day," which will be based in the Hartford area (Coffey County), and run from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m.
The field day is sponsored by the Coffey and Lyon County Conservation Districts, K-State Research and Extension, Lake Region RC&D-Ecotone Forestry, Kansas Forest Service, US Fish and Wildlife Service, and Kansas Rural Center, as well as the Neosho Headwaters, Upper Neosho and Eagle Creek Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) groups. This list of partners will be on hand to share their knowledge on techniques to establish and manage streamside forests (also known as riparian forests), as well as inform landowners on the technical service and cost-share funding available to make their streamside projects a success.
The event will kick off at 9 a.m. at the Flint Hills National Wildlife Refuge, located at 530 W. Maple in Hartford. Participants are encouraged to arrive between 8:30 a.m. and 9 a.m. for registration and refreshments. Following introductions and an overview of the day's events, attendees will travel to three sites within the Flint Hills refuge to view and discuss projects on native grass buffers, management of field edges for wildlife (quail, deer), and how to improve existing stands of streamside trees for wildlife habitat and quality timber (black walnut, oak). The morning talks will be led by Mary Lou Ponder (Coffee County Buffer Coordinator), Tim Menard (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service), as well as three area foresters (Katy Dhungel, Kansas Forest Service, and Ecotone Forestry's Ryan Neises and Mark Peper).
Following the morning field tour, attendees will travel back to the refuge main office to enjoy a catered lunch from 12 to 1pm, and hear an informative history of the Flint Hills National Wildlife Refuge from Tim Menard.
At 1 p.m., participants will travel to the Neosho Rapids area to view an impressive streambank stabilization site, reinforced with a hardwood forest buffer along the Neosho River. Mary Lou Ponder and Thad Rhodes (district forester, Kansas Forest Service) will discuss forest buffer design and how the Conservation Reserve Program can affect the bottom line of landowners interested in streamside trees. Next, Ryan Neises will talk on management techniques landowners can use (such as weed control methods) to ensure their forest buffers are successful. Finally, The Watershed Institute (streambank erosion control experts) will discuss a variety of streambank erosion control measures, and provide guidance to those desiring such practices on their land. The event will conclude at 3 p.m., and speakers will be available briefly following for one-on-one chats.
Register with Kristi Voigts (Coffee County Conservation District) at 620-364-2182, ext. 1334. For more information, contact Billy Beck at Kansas Forest Service at email@example.com, or 785-532-3308.