Over 40 landowners and farmers attended the Boone River Watershed Field day on April 10, 2017, hosted by local Soil and Water Conservation Districts (SWCD), The Nature Conservancy, Clean Water Iowa, and the Legler Family Farm near Corwith, Iowa. Thanks to sponsors, DuPont Pioneer, farmers had a great lunch while talking and learning from other farmers about cover crops, conservation tillage, and other best management practices relating to soil health.
In the morning local landowners toured the Humbolt County restored oxbow along Prairie Creek near Renwick, IA. Karen Wilke from The Nature Conservancy spoke about the importance of oxbows and floodplain restoration to Topeka shiners, a federally endangered fish species. Farmers were able to get up close and personal with Topeka shiners thanks to Iowa State University seining the oxbow. What’s great about this conservation practice is that it doesn’t take land out of production, it creates great habitat for waterfowl and other wildlife, it holds floodwater, and reduces nutrients and sediments going into the stream.
Farmers gathered on Chuck Legler’s farm in the afternoon to learn and hear from Jordan Kolarik (SWCD), Adam Kiel (Iowa Soybean Association), Sarah Carlson (Practical Farmers of Iowa), and of course Chuck and his son about conservation on the farm. One of the implement dealers brought in a strip till machine to show farmers. Fishers & Farmers had collected soil samples before the event from Chuck’s cover crops, pasture, and buffers so they were able to wrap up the day by showing the soil health benefits from these important conservation practices with a rainfall simulator.
To learn more about the Boone River Watershed effort, visit:
watershed.fishersandfarmers.org/boone-river/ or booneriver.org