RMEF Grants for Projects in Kansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma

MISSOULA, Mont.–Wildlife conservation and youth education projects in three Great Plains states–Kansas, Nebraska and Oklahoma–have been selected to receive grants from the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation in 2010.

The RMEF grants, totaling $31,850, will affect three counties in Kansas, two counties in Nebraska and three counties in Oklahoma.

One additional project in Kansas has statewide interest.

“All of these grants are possible because of successful banquets and fundraisers staged over the past year by our Kansas, Nebraska and Oklahoma volunteers–most of whom are elk hunters as well as devoted conservationists,” said David Allen, RMEF president and CEO. “Since 1984, our annual grants have helped complete 165 different projects in these three states with a combined value of more than $4.7 million.”

RMEF grants will help fund the following projects, listed by state and county:

Kansas projects (grant total $13,750):

Riley County–Manage approximately 462 acres of agricultural plots at Fort Riley to help keep elk on federal lands and to benefit other resident species (also affects Geary County).

Morton County–Treat invasive tamarisk using a combination of mechanical, prescribe burn and herbicide techniques to improve habitat for elk and other wildlife at Cimarron National Grassland.

Statewide–Sponsor Kansas 2011 Pass It On-Outdoor Mentors program to help introduce at-risk Kansas youths to outdoor recreation and conservation.

Nebraska projects (grant total $10,000):

Dawes County–Sponsor a scholarship for one wildlife conservation student at Chadron State College for 2010.

Sioux County–Remove one mile of woven-wire fencing and replace with a more wildlife-friendly fencing to separate grazing units at Soldier Creek Wilderness Area.

Oklahoma projects (grant total $8,100):

Lincoln County–Sponsor CrossTimbers Archery and Adventure Camp to introduce families, kids and at-risk youths to outdoor recreation and conservation.

Pittsburg County–Sponsor Pittsburg County 4-H Shooting Sports Program, with more than 500 youth participants, to introduce students to outdoor recreation and conservation.

Pushmataha County–Prescribe burn 4,100 acres to enhance forage for elk, deer, turkey, quail, migratory songbirds and other wildlife at Pushmataha Wildlife Management Area.

Habitat projects are selected for grants using science-based criteria and a committee of RMEF volunteers and staff along with representatives from partnering agencies and universities. Conservation education and hunting heritage projects are selected by RMEF field staff and volunteers.

Partners for 2010 projects in Kansas, Nebraska and Oklahoma include Cimarron National Grassland, Fort Riley Military Reservation, Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation, U.S. Forest Service, other agencies, organizations and landowners.

About the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation:
Snowy peaks, dark timber basins and grassy meadows. RMEF is leading an elk country initiative that has conserved or enhanced habitat on over 5.8 million acres–a land area equivalent to a swath three miles wide and stretching along the entire Continental Divide from Canada to Mexico. RMEF also works to open, secure and improve public access for hunting, fishing and other recreation. Get involved at www.rmef.org or 800-CALL ELK.

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