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Habitat Programs

Habitat Programs

PHEASANTS FOREVER HABITAT PROGRAMS FOR LANDOWNERS

Pheasants Forever is a nonprofit organization formed in 1982 in response to the continuing decline of ringneck pheasants. Pheasants Forever now has over 140,000 members nationwide, with around 20,000 in Iowa.

The Mahaska County Pheasants Forever Chapter retains the funds raised at the annual banquets and uses them for local habitat work. The work includes, but is not limited to, establishment of pollinator habitat, woody cover, nesting cover, and food plots adjacent to key wintering areas, and wetland restoration. Below are Mahaska County Pheasants Forever Chapter Guidelines for assistance in the following programs:

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Preserving our Natural Resources

Preserving our Natural Resources

Iowa Pheasants Forever Native Seed Program

Iowa Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever partners with the Native Grass Growers Association to provide a reliable source for native prairie seed mixes for restoration projects, including practice specific mixes that comply with the specifications of the Conservation Reserve Program. 

CLICK HERE to see all the seed mixes currently available through Iowa Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever. 

Permanent Winter Wildlife Cover with Tree or Shrub Plantings Program:

  • The chapter will cost share up to a maximum of $250.00 for shrub and tree establishment per eligible land owner.
  • Shelterbelts should be at least 8 rows wide.
  • Grazing is not permitted in tree plantings under any circumstances.
  • The primary purpose if for wildlife habitat.
  • Applicants participating in leased or fee hunting are not eligible for Chapter assistance.
  • The Chapter will reimburse the entire cost of purchasing an Iowa DNR Pheasant and Quail packet upon inspection.
  • The Chapter reserves the right to accept or reject any application.

Permanent Nesting and Winter Habitat Program:

  • The Chapter will provide up to $250.00 OR 50% (whichever is less) cost share. We recommend diverse stands.
  • Any size is eligible but larger areas are encouraged.
  • Cover should be located at least 150 feet away from tall trees.
  • Haying, grazing, mowing, or seed harvesting will not be permitted unless authorized by the Chapter.
  • The primary purpose of this habitat improvement is for wildlife.
  • Applicants participating in leased or fee hunting are not eligible for Chapter assistance.
  • The Chapter reserves the right to accept or reject any application.
  • The Chapter encourages individuals to post a Pheasants Forever Habitat Improvement sign at the project site.
  • Applicants are required to maintain the habitat for 10 years.

Wildlife Food Plot Program:

  • The Chapter will provide free corn, sorghum seed and various habitat mixes to eligible landowners. The Chapter will also pay inspection fees for CRP plots.
  • Food plots should be located at least 50 yards away from tall deciduous trees that act as predator perches.
  • Food plots should be located next to shrubs or grassy winter cover.
  • Applicants participating in leased or fee hunting are not eligible for Chapter assistance
  • The Chapter reserves the right to accept or reject any application.
  • The Chapter encourages diverse food plots.

    Professional Assistance: For more information regarding these Mahaska County Pheasant Forever cost sharing programs, contact the following:

    • Mahaska County Conservation Board: 2342 Highway 92, Oskaloosa, IA 52577 (641) 673-9327

    Applicants for Pheasants Forever cost share assistance are required to be members of Pheasants Forever. If you are not currently a member, the $35.00 membership fee will be deducted from your cost share amount. You do not have to allow Pheasants Forever members or others to hunt unless you welcome them.

    MAHASKA COUNTY BURN CREW

    MAHASKA COUNTY BURN CREW

    We are a mixed group of professional wildlife personnel and outdoor enthusiasts. When we are on the fire line we are all volunteering our time for the betterment of habitat, while raising a few dollars to fund our youth and habitat programs in Mahaska County. 

    Step 1: Contact Mahaska County Pheasants Forever to get on the list of burns to be done. It is never too early. The list fills quickly.
    Step 2: Pheasants Forever will develop a burn plan for suitable conditions for the prescribe fire to be conducted.
    Step 3: The landowner will need to sign the burn plan and authorization form.


    How Much Does It Cost?
    Landowner billed cost per acre is $35.

    There is a minimum charge of $500.00 for each burn, or $250.00 per piece if the project is broken up in small pieces. 

    For more information please contact Ben Hoskinson (641-672-2897 Ext. 16) or email at hoskinson@mahaskacounty.org