NextGen Habitat Projects is a program being offered to improve honey bee, native bee, and monarch butterfly health.
Cooperators accepted in the program receive a program incentive payment, the option of an annual rental payment, and free seed to plant 50% of contracted acres to a high quality forage mix designed for honey bees and 50% of contracted acres to a high quality, diverse seed mix designed for monarch butterflies and other native pollinators.
Part of the application and ranking process is the location of the proposed project to a registered honey bee apiary in the state. Applicants should visit the appropriate state website to determine the location in miles from the project site to the nearest registered apiary and include that information in the appropriate application location.
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“The Bee & Butterfly Habitat Fund is the bees’ buzz! The effort is integrating the very best performing habitat solutions where they are most needed, by bringing landowners and beekeepers together in a program where everyone benefits. It’s our goal to make every available acre the best it can be. It’s truly amazing just how much difference an acre can make when the habitat is engineered for maximum productivity!”
“This project is a unique conservation effort, targeting acres in regions where conversion to soy and corn is happening very fast. By identifying places where habitat makes the most sense, the bottom line improves for the grower, the beekeeper, the monarch, upland songbirds and game birds, honey bees and native pollinators – it’s a program that can’t lose!”
"The Bee & Butterfly Habitat Fund is unique in that it has found the way to plant cost-effective pollinator habitat that establishes quickly and provides great pollinator benefits. It's the trifecta of getting great pollinator benefits onto the landscape. If we try to solve the critical problems for pollinators using the same tools and methods we have used for the last decade, we won’t be successful. The Bee & Butterfly Habitat Fund brings new strategies, methods and partners together to save monarch butterflies, honey bees and other pollinators, not to mention the nation’s food supply and beautiful landscapes."