Gagetown, Verona and Rush Lake State Game Areas
The District enjoys a very good working relationship with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR). Over the past several years MDNR has contracted with the District to carry out habitat maintenance and improvement at the Gagetown & Verona State Game Areas. Activities include brush removal, stump treatment, mowing to remove noxious weeds, interseeding grasses into established stands, removal of played out seedings and establishment of entirely new grassland plantings.
At the Rush Lake State Game Area the District carries out basically the same type of operations for the MDNR. In exchange for the maintenance assistance, the District share crops the agricultural land. Revenue generated from the crops grown cover the input costs and offsets the cost associated with other District programs.
Elkton Phosphorus Reduction Plot
The Elkton plot is a cooperative project that includes Huron County Hunger Relief, Village of Elkton, NRCS, MSU Extension, Michigan Land Improvement Contractors Association, many agri-businesses and individuals. In exchange for field activities, the District is evaluating the need for additional phosphorus applicaiton for a typical Huron County crop rotation. Three different rates are used zero, low and high. The plot is randomized and replicated. A unique feature of our plot is the use of best management practiced. Practices used include, but are not limited to, strip-tillage, cover crop, pre-sidedress nitrate testing, no-till, filter strips along all drains, surface water inlets, drop structure and others.
Sugarbeets were grown in 2013, results of the phosphorus trial.
Saginaw Bay Shoreline Phragmites Management Project
The pragmites project is a joint venture between the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Fairhaven Township, Bay Port Chamber of Commerce and the District. The project area incompasses the shoreline of Sebewaing, Fairhaven and McKinley Townships. This project builds on phragmites management carried out by the Bay Port Chamber of Commerce in 2012. Funding provided by U.S. Fish & Wildlife and match provided by the partners will be used to treat approximately 33 acres in 2014 and again in 2015. Partners and volunteers are busy contacting property owners and securing their commitment to the project. Presently, activities are centered near Bay Port with plans to expand north and south.