Lower Fox Demonstration Farm Network

The Great Lakes basin has diverse geology, climate, topography and soils that provide challenges to controlling erosion and nonpoint source pollution not always found in other parts of the country. The diversity of the region creates challenges for managers to develop conservation practice systems that function in a predictable manner while addressing the region’s conservation priorities. In the Lower Fox River watershed, just south of Green Bay, the Great Lakes Commission (GLC) and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) have partnered to create a network of farms that demonstrate the best, cutting-edge conservation practices to reduce phosphorus entering Green Bay and Lake Michigan, with a goal of improving Great Lakes water quality.
The Lower Fox Demonstration Farms Network has established sites within the Lower Fox River (just south of Green Bay, Wisconsin) to test the effectiveness of current and innovative conservation systems; establish an effective mechanism to transfer technology and conservation system effectiveness information to land management agencies, producers and the public; create opportunities for stakeholders to test their research, technical assistance and program implementation at the demonstration sites; and create and implement an information/outreach strategy to share information and lessons learned from the Network to managers, researchers and stakeholders across the Great Lakes Basin.

Project Narrative

The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and the Great Lakes Commission (GLC) have partnered to establish a Great Lakes Demonstration Farm Network – the first of its kind – in Wisconsin. Other partners include the Brown County Land & Water Conservation Department and Outagamie County Land Conservation Department.

The Great Lakes basin has diverse geology, climate, topography, and soils that provide challenges to controlling erosion and nonpoint source pollution. The diversity of the region creates challenges for managers to develop conservation practice systems that function in a predictable manner while addressing the region’s conservation priorities.

The Network is working to provide better information on the effectiveness of conservation systems used to improve water quality. The participating farms demonstrate effectiveness and adaptability of conservation practice systems to reduce erosion and sedimentation, control phosphorus runoff, and address other nonpoint source pollution issues. The Network also provides educational technology transfer opportunities for the public, farmers, land managers, agribusiness, environmental, and natural resource agencies, and research entities and their partners.

The six farms currently participating in the Network are Brickstead Dairy, Nettekoven Farms, New Horizons Dairy, Tinedale Cropping, Van Wychen Farms, and VandeWettering Farms. Each of these farms have played an intricate role in demonstrating and sharing information about leading-edge practices and technologies applied on their farms. Farmers and landowners, partners, government officials, universities, and many other groups have toured these innovative farms, and participated in field days and open houses.

Project Partners


 

Funding

Funding for this project is provided by the US Department of Agriculture – Natural Resource Conservation Services.

For More Information

Nicole Zacharda
Project Manager
Great Lakes Commission
734-971-9135
nzacharda@glc.org

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