The United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is now accepting applications from Tennessee producers and landowners who are interested in implementing conservation practices to improve natural resources on their farm or forest land. Funding is available through NRCS Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP).

Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency’s wildlife habitat biologists can help landowners develop a wildlife plan. At least 10% of the Tennessee EQIP funds are supposed to be spent on wildlife practices. To learn about managing wildlife habitat, financial assistance opportunities, and contact information for habitat biologists, visit The deadline to apply for fiscal year 2021 funding is November 20.

“We accept applications for the EQIP program on a continuous basis; however only applications received by November 20 will be considered for funding this fiscal year,” said Tennessee NRCS State Conservationist Sheldon Hightower. “EQIP places a priority on water quality, water conservation, and promotes soil health practices by offering financial and technical assistance to address these resource concerns on eligible agricultural land.”

EQIP is an incentives program that provides financial assistance for conservation systems such as, but not limited to, animal waste management facilities, fencing, and water supply development for improved grazing management, riparian protection, and wildlife habitat enhancement.

Applications can be taken at all Tennessee NRCS offices and USDA Service Centers. Applications must be received in your local Service Center by close of business on Friday, Nov. 20.

Harvest incentive

program being offered in Unit CWD

An incentive program to increase the deer harvest in Unit CWD is being offered in partnership between Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency and Tennessee Wildlife Resources Foundation. The program features two levels of rewards to incentivize deer harvest resulting in a free license for the 2021-22 license year.

The top tier first prize would be a free sportsman’s license for 2021-22. Any hunter who harvests four antlerless deer and four antlered deer through January 8, 2021 would receive a free Sportsman’s license. Any hunter who harvests four antlerless deer through January 8, 2021 will receive a free Type 001 license ($34) and a supplemental hunting equipment license of the hunter’s choice ($33). Tennessee Wildlife Resources Foundation will be purchasing the licenses.

The offer only applies to deer harvested in Unit CWD. The deer must be submitted for CWD testing. The license is not transferrable to another person.

The program applies to only Tennessee residents or native Tennesseans. After the hunting season, hunters will be notified and asked which supplemental license is desired if they are in the second tier. The successful hunters will be notified of new license in mid-February.

Unit CWD consists of the counties of Chester, Crockett, Fayette, Gibson, Hardeman, Haywood, Lauderdale, Madison, McNairy, Shelby, and Tipton.