2022 Berggren Plan Web

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33 APPENDIX A. HABITAT AND HUNTER ACCESS GOALS FOR PRIORITY AREAS ON PRIVATE LANDS Over the past five years (2016-2020), efforts to improve pheasant habitat and increase public access were targeted in eight priority areas identified in the original Berggren Plan (Figure 2)� These priority areas were termed "Pheasant Opportunity Areas (POA) and "Focus on Pheasants (FOP) Areas," with the latter being indicative of a longer-term initiative (five-plus years)� The Commission continues to take a science-based approach, concentrating efforts where they will be most effective – where habitat, hunter access, and community support come together� In Nebraska and many surrounding states, the majority of pheasant habitat occurs on private lands, which presents opportunities and challenges for achieving the habitat/access objectives in the plan� History indicates that opportunities to create and improve pheasant habitat on private lands comes and goes� This is influenced by many factors that often are outside of our agency's control (e�g�, land/ cash rental values, commodity prices, willingness of landowners to participate in programs, etc�)� The Commission and its partners must maintain an adaptive approach to pheasant management to be successful� This allows the agency to shift priorities and resources to different areas of the state when opportunities arise (e�g� new partnerships, policy changes that increase habitat availability, etc�)� Table A1� Boundary Changes Made to Priority Areas during the Revision of the Berggren Plan (2�0) Priority Area Boundary Change / Status Southwest FOP Added remaining (western) portions of Chase/Dundy counties South-Central FOP Added Webster County Northern Panhandle POA No Changes Southern Panhandle POA Added eastern Kimball (East of U�S� Highway 71) and southern Morrill counties (South of Platte River) Central POA Removed Lincoln/Logan counties, added remaining portions of Sherman/ Howard counties and southern portions of Valley/Greeley counties Northeast POA Removed Holt County and added Pierce, Madison and Stanton counties Southeast POA Removed (except for Webster County as described above) Central Platte POA Removed On the subsequent pages, the area-specific accomplishments achieved during Berggren Plan 1�0 (2016-2020), as well as the priorities and associated habitat/access goals for Berggren Plan 2�0 (2022-2026) are listed� These goals are based on what the research is telling us we need, our knowledge of the areas, and past experience with the acceptance of various practices and initiatives within these areas� Acreage goals listed in Tables A2-A11 were formulated based on various sources of information available to us including land cover data (from 2016), the current distribution of CRP acres, existing public access contracts, and habitat suitability models (Jorgensen et al� 2014)� Acreage goals associated with the retention and management of CRP acres were based on upcoming contract expirations within each priority area and known management timeframes� New CRP acreage goals were projected based on need but will depend on national CRP acreage caps and sign-up opportunities� To summarize habitat goals for each priority area, habitat practices (and associated acreages) were placed in some generalized categories (Tables A2-A8 and A11)� Cost estimates provided in Table A11 were based on the acreage goals multiplied by an average cost per acre for each practice� These costs illustrate projected needs but do not represent agency budgetary commitments; funds will be committed based on resources available each annual budget cycle� The cost per acre is based on USDA county average cost-share rates and/or incentive payment rates that have been utilized in the past� The average cost per year assumes that projects and associated expenditures will be spread evenly throughout the five-year plan� This likely will not be the case because CRP sign-up opportunities and the quantity of expiring acres are often highly variable among years�

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