Non-Cropped Wetland Restoration Initiative

While many programs exist for restoring cropped wetlands, few financial incentives exist for landowners to restore non-cropped wetlands and still allow use of these wetland and grassland complexes for livestock production.

The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks (GFP) recognizes the opportunity and immediate benefits of restoring hydrology and function to drained wetlands in grassland settings.

It's important to recognize that restored wetlands, particularly temporary and seasonal wetlands, will often be dry.

Nevertheless, in most years breeding waterfowl and other wildlife species will benefit substantially from habitat restored through this program. Landowners will benefit by improving the distribution of water throughout pastures and the potential to increase forage production.

  • GFP will provide 100 percent cost share to restore wetland hydrology (removing drainage tile or installing ditch plugs) and make a"one-time payment" of $150 per surface acre of wetlands restored, with no limit per cooperator.

  • Priority will be given to those landowners who have adjacent undisturbed grassland adjacent to a restored wetland or have an interest in improving their grazing management.

  • GFP habitat biologists will survey, design and stake projects for construction, while assisting the landowner in obtaining all required permits. Contact one of them today to learn more.