Federal grant program will distribute as much as $400,000 for large conservation projects; application deadline Dec. 2

TOPEKA — Application materials for the State Wildlife Grants (SWG) are now available from the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks (KDWP). SWG is a federal grant program funded in part by the Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior, and administered in Kansas by KDWP. The priority of this program is to fund projects that benefit nongame fish and wildlife and their associated habitats. Federal regulations require that projects benefit “species of greatest conservation need,” which may include listed federal and state endangered and threatened species.

KDWP will distribute as much as $400,000 SWG funds through competitive sub-grants. Eligible applicants include local governments, nonprofit corporations, and educational institutions. Federal regulations require that a minimum of 35 percent of project costs be matched from non-federal sources.

To be eligible, proposals must address issues and strategies identified in Kansas' Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Plan (CWCP), entitled “A Future for Kansas Wildlife," which may be found online at www.kdwp.ks.us. (At this website, type "Kansas CWCP" in the search box, then click the "Kansas CWCP" link.) All proposals that address priorities stated in A Future for Kansas Wildlife for Species of Greatest Conservation Need will be considered for funding. However, priority consideration will be given to research proposals that specifically address the following:

  • determine habitat associations of broadhead skink (Plestiodon laticeps), determine if Kansas populations are genetically distinct from other populations, and provide any observational data as a geospatial layer capable of easy integration into KDWP GIS systems;
  • determine habitat associations of longnose snake (Rhinocheilus lecontei), determine if Kansas populations are genetically distinct from other populations, and provide any observation data as a geospatial layer capable of easy integration into KDWP GIS systems;
  • assess reproductive life history of Great Plains pelagic spawning fish — i.e. plains minnow (Hybognathus placitus), Arkansas River speckled chub (Macrhybopsis tetranema) silver chub (Macrhybopsis storeriana) — including spawning microhabitat requirements (e.g. flow, substrate, water quality), recruitment success, and impacts of anthropogenic activities (e.g. flow alteration, obstructions, and water diversion) on the viability of existing populations; and
  • assess population sustainability and habitat requirements (physical, biological, and chemical) of the only known population of the Scott riffle beetle (Optioservus phaeus) and evaluate “Active Management Options” related to habitat suitability provided in Recovery Plan for the Scott Riffle Beetle, Optioservus phaeus, in Kansas, (Gilbert). The Recovery Plan can be found online at kdwp.state.ks.us/news/Other-Services/Threatened-and-Endangered-Species/Recovery-Plans.

Specific objectives of the Scott riffle beetle work include estimating long-term population viability of the species at the Big Spring site, evaluating potential management options to enhance habitat for the species at the Big Spring site (including potential for enhancement of habitat substrate as recommended in the Recovery Plan), and determining site criteria that should be considered if transplant of the species were to be undertaken.

The deadline for applications is Dec. 2. For more information or to request application materials, write the Office of Federal Aid, KDWP, 1020 SW Kansas, Room 200, Topeka, KS 66612, or phone 785-296-2281. Persons with special communication needs may use the Kansas Relay Center, 1-800-766-3777.