Erosion Control in Our Forests Workshop Held in Potter County

Group photo in the upper right: (left to right): Chuck Coup, SFI Program Manager; Jason Childs, PCCD Manager; Andrew Mickey, PCCD Dirt, Gravel and Low Volume Road Specialist; Sherry Dunmire, McKean County Conservation District Resource Conservationist; Maddie Stanisch, McKean County Conservation District Resource Conservationist (front row); Ryan Grimm, Elk County Conservation District (ECCD) Resource Conservationist (back row); Victoria Challingsworth, ECCD Resource Conservationist; Micaela Lefever, ECCD Watershed Technician; Scott Moore, Tioga Co Resource Conservationist; Glenn Dunn, PCCD Resource Conservationist; Eric Monger, DCNR Bureau of Forestry Service Forester.

On Friday, October 8, 2021, the Potter County Conservation District (PCCD) hosted “Erosion Control in Our Forests”–a Sustainable Forestry Initiative workshop for foresters, loggers, logging contractors, and private forest landowners.

Held at the Pennsylvania Lumber Museum and on-field sites within the Susquehannock Forest, the event provided Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) and Society of American Foresters (SAF) credits. The workshop was held with the support and expertise of several speakers and organizations, including the PA Department of Agriculture, PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Bureau of Forestry, and Elk, McKean, Cameron, and Tioga County Conservation Districts.

In total, 51 attendees participated. Topics covered included erosion prevention/102/105 permitting, planning harvests, stream crossings, and post-timbering best management practices.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Lancaster Completes Multi-Functional Riparian Forest Buffer

Lancaster County Conservation District completed a 20-acre multi-functional riparian forest buffer project on a dairy farm in Lancaster County. The total cost for the buffer was $66,368 and was paid for through PACD’s multi-functional buffer sub-grant program. Click here for more information. Contact Holly Miller with questions at hmiller@pacd.org.

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Franklin County Conservation District Hosts Showcase Tour

Secretary Russell Redding (left) with Dairy Farmers/CEG Recipients Ben & Sharon Peckman.

On September 30, 2021, the Franklin County Conservation District held a showcase tour of the county’s first completed project funded through the Conservation Excellence Grant (CEG) program. The tour was held at Ben and Sharon Peckman’s Slate Ridge Dairy Farm in Saint Thomas, PA.

PA Department of Agriculture Secretary Russell C. Redding participated in the tour along with Representatives Kauffman and Schemel and Commissioner Ziobrowski. As a result, participants were able to see firsthand the conservation work being accomplished in Franklin County.

Secretary Redding’s office said this about his participation in the tour:

It’s always gratifying to see a plan come together, especially when the results mean cleaner water, healthier soil, and a regenerative, sustainable, solid farm operation.

Like Franklin County Conservation District, PA Manager David Stoner said of their County Action Plan, “The stars were aligned, staff was in place to do the work, money came in, and farmers applied.”

Yesterday, I spent a perfect afternoon touring the results of the farm that fit the plans goals perfectly and had the most important ingredient – a willing farmer who is committed to conservation. On Ben and Sharon Peckman’s Slate Ridge Dairy Farm in St. Thomas, the plan came together in just six months from project conception to completion.

With Conservation Excellence Grant funding from the state to the Conservation District, and REAP tax credits from the state to meet out-of-pocket costs not covered by the grant, this investment by the state, the county and the farmer will pay off in a healthy viable farm. What we envisioned for Conservation Excellence Grants has payed [sic] off here.

Click here for the description of the Slate Ridge Dairy CEG project. 

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Lehigh County Conservation District Hosts Pesticide Applicators Training

Rich Shearman of SiteOne Landscape Supply demonstrates correct calibration of spray equipment. Photo provided by Lehigh County Conservation District.

Lehigh County Conservation District and Lower Macungie Township partnered to host a daylong training for certified pesticide applicators on September 14, 2021, at the Township’s Community Center.

Forty-two municipal representatives attended, including several townships, boroughs, and county parks. Instruction was provided on the proper choice, mixing, application, and disposal of herbicides and pesticides. Identification and control of common invasive weeds tied into the hands-on demo for correct mixing of herbicides and equipment calibration.

The training also included the latest recommendations for spotted lanternfly remediation, the biology and elimination of mosquitoes, and information on the Department of Environmental Protection’s black fly program. In addition, an update was provided on a long-term research project to determine the prevalence of various tick species and the pathogens they carry in the Greater Lehigh Valley Area.

Municipalities that attended received credit toward their Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) training requirements. In addition to the MS4 credits, licensed attendees received PA pesticide applicator credits.

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Elk County Conservation District Holds AMD Tour

Eli Long from the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy leads the Cherry Run AMD site tour. Photo provided by Elk County Conservation District.

In August, the Elk County Conservation District held an acid mine drainage (AMD) educational workshop and site tour in Force, PA. Topics during the workshop included how AMD forms, how it is remediated, and an experiment for participants on to “Make their own AMD.”  A tour of a local site followed.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Montgomery County Conservation District Completes Multi-Functional Riparian Forest Buffer

Montgomery County Conservation District planted a total of 0.75 acres of multi-functional riparian forest buffer at the Upper Perkiomen Valley YMCA in Montgomery County. The total cost for the buffer was $10,131.39 and was paid for through PACD’s multi-functional buffer sub-grant program: https://pacd.org/?page_id=17536

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Bureau of Recreation and Conservation. 

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Jefferson County Conservation District Holds Rain Barrel Workshop

Watershed Specialist Evan DeLong standing next to installed rain barrel and sign by the Jefferson County Conservation District office.

In June, Jefferson County Conservation District received a Nonpoint Source Pollution Prevention Mini-grant to hold their first-ever rain barrel workshop. The district educated over 13 participants about the importance of nonpoint source pollution, water conservation, and water quality.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Potter and Cameron County Conservation Districts Host Legislative Tour

Photo of Pine Run culvert replacement project provided by Potter County Conservation District.

On Friday, August 27, 2021, the Potter and Cameron County Conservation Districts held a joint legislative project tour. The tour showcased two project sites in each county and highlighted the need for continued funding and prioritization. North West Region Director and National Association of Conservation Districts Director Cliff Lane represented PACD at the event.

Project sites visited include the Sterling Run Acid Mine Drainage Treatment Site and the Driftwood Mudsill Crib Wall and Riparian Planting Site in Cameron County. In Potter County, the areas visited included the Southwoods Road Soil Pinning Site and the Pine Run Culvert Replacement Project.

Tour participants included Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection North Central Regional Office representatives, local state representatives, commissioners, and conservation district board members from multiple counties.

The project sites provide great benefits for their respective watersheds and demonstrate the need for continued funding and prioritization of this work.

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Fayette County Conservation District Talks Agriculture with Local Radio Station

Screenshot of WMBS video. Pierce Willson is pictured on the left and Dave Lohr on the right.

On August 25, 2021, two Fayette County Conservation District representatives spoke to the local radio station WMBS. Dave Lohr, Commissioner Director, and Pierce Willson, Agricultural Coordinator, participated in a 45-minute segment called “What’s Working in Fayette County.”

Dave and Pierce spoke about the history of conservation districts, soil conservation, and how the district helps farmers in the county.

Click here to watch the video. 

 

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Westmoreland Conservation District Creates Stormwater Video Series

Westmoreland Conservation District has created “The Homeowner’s Guide to Stormwater Video Series.” The series is available on YouTube and through the district’s website here. This series of videos will help homeowners learn how they can control stormwater around their homes and property.

 

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