Wildlife-Friendly Livestock Pond Fund Pool Grant

USDA: Natural Resources Conservation Service of California

Grant amount: Unspecified amount

Next anticipated deadline: Jan 19, 2019

Later anticipated deadlines: Apr 6, 2019, Jun 22, 2019

Applicant type: Working Professional Indigenous Group For-Profit Business College / University Nonprofit

Funding uses: Applied Project / Program

Location of project: Counties in California: Alameda County, Contra Costa County, Santa Clara County

Location of residency: California

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Environmental Quality Incentives Program

The Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) is a voluntary, conservation program administered by NRCS that can provide financial and technical assistance to install conservation practices that address natural resource concerns. The purpose of EQIP is to promote agricultural production, forest management, and environmental quality as compatible goals; to optimize environmental benefits; and to help farmers and ranchers meet Federal, State, Tribal, and local environmental regulations.

Wildlife-Friendly Livestock Pond Fund Pool

The purpose of the Wildlife-Friendly Livestock Pond Fund Pool is to target financial assistance funds for the implementation of conservation practices on eligible agricultural operations to support aquatic, riparian, and upland habitats for California Red-legged frog (Rana draytonii) and California Tiger Salamander (Ambystoma californiense). 

Eligible agricultural landuses for the fund pool are restricted to grazed rangeland because of the habitat needs of these two species. Natural areas such as associated agricultural lands not in agricultural production are also eligible. 

Ponds may be restored to hold their original quantity of water and will therefore increase the potential to hold water in a field for livestock use. Improvements to livestock ponds may also improve inadequate stock water issues that compromise the ability of a land manager to properly utilize and manage forage. 

Other possible treatments may reduce the amount of sediments coming into a pond, which in turn extend the number of years that pond will hold sufficient amounts of water. 

Due to the high potential for listed species to be affected by the proposed projects, programmatic permits held by the NRCS, the Alameda County Resource Conservation District, and the Contra Costa Resource Conservation District may be utilized, when appropriate. 

Complying with regulatory permits ensures that the goals of this initiative are met via habitat improvements for California Red-legged frog and California Tiger Salamander. All practices implemented with financial assistance from EQIP must follow Federal, State, and local regulations. 

Eligible Land Use

Only applications for agricultural operations that address resource concern on at least one land use type listed below will be considered for financial assistance from this EQIP Fund Pool. The descriptions below are the general NRCS land use definitions - applications should fit within, but do not need to exactly match, these descriptions. 

  • Range: Land used primarily for the production of grazing animals. Includes native plant communities and those seeded to native or introduced species, or naturalized by introduced species that are ecologically managed using range management principles. 
  • Associated Agricultural Lands: Land associated with farms and ranches that are not purposefully managed for food, forage, or fiber and are typically associated with nearby production or conservation lands. This could include incidental areas, such as odd areas, ditches and watercourses, riparian areas, field edges, seasonal and permanent wetlands, and other similar areas. 
  • Grazed: Where grazing animals impact how land is managed.
  • Wildlife: Where the applicant is actively managing for wildlife

Eligible NRCS Conservation Practices

All conservation practices planned for financial assistance must be included in the ‘EQIP schedule of operations’ and address a resource concern identified in this EQIP Fund Pool. NRCS conservation practices eligible for financial assistance through this EQIP Fund Pool are listed in the below table. All conservation practices included in an application for the Wildlife-Friendly Livestock Pond EQIP Fund Pool must directly improve the breading habitat for the California red-legged frog and/or California tiger salamander. 

  • Conservation practice, 378 – Pond, can only be included in an application for this initiative if the pond is existing, was formally used as a livestock pond, is being rehabilitated for wildlife habitat, and is for not used for irrigation. New ponds are not eligible for financial assistance through EQIP. 
  • Conservation practices to address resource issues related to roads must reduce or eliminate excess sediments entering a livestock pond or a water body that flows to a livestock water pond; examples include, but are not limited to, 560 - Access Road and 587 - Structure for Water Control.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • Wildlife-Friendly Livestock Pond EQIP Fund Pool Counties include:
    • Alameda
    • Contra Costa
    • northern Santa Clara
  • To be eligible to participate in EQIP, an applicant must meet all of the following producer eligibility criteria:
    • Be an agricultural producer.
    • Have control of the land for the term of the contract period.
    • Have landowner concurrence to implement structural or vegetative practices, if applicable.
    • Be in compliance with the highly erodible land and wetland conservation compliance provisions.
    • Be in compliance with adjusted gross income (AGI) requirements.
    • Be within payment limitation requirements.
    • Be within annual payment limitation requirements, if applicable.
    • Have a Dun and Bradstreet Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number registered in the System for Award Management (SAM), if applicable.
    • Be in compliance with the provisions for protecting the interests of tenants and sharecroppers.
    • See full details and definitions for Producer Eligibility here
  • To be eligible for EQIP, the land must meet all of the following criteria:
    • Be agricultural land, nonindustrial private forest land, Tribal land, or other land on which agricultural products, livestock, or forest-related products are produced.
    • Be privately owned land, eligible public land, or Tribal land.
    • Have landowner concurrence to implement structural or vegetative practices, if applicable.
    • Planned practices address an identified natural resource concern.
    • Have irrigated 2 out of the last 5 years to install an irrigation-related practice.
    • See full details and definitions for Land Eligibility here.