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Cover Crop Research Helps Refine Management

Delta Farmland & Wildlife Trust conducted an experimental field study of waterfowl habitat use on Delta Farms during the winter of 2009. Our results show that winter cover crop management, including planting date and cover crop species used, influences the capacity of a field to support waterfowl. Winter wheat planted in late August and early September supported significantly more waterfowl than fields planted in late Setpember and early October. Winter wheat also supported more waterfowl than spring cereals like oats and barley. The results of this study were used to refine the management of the Winter Cover Crop Stewardship Program. Farmers are now eligible to receive a greater cost-share for planting winter wheat.

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