In 2015, the Upper Wabash River Basin Commission attended the Huntington Co. Soil and Water Conservation District Annual Meeting on February 24th, Jay Co. Soil and Water Conservation District Annual Meeting on February 25th, Wells Co. Soil and Water Conservation District Annual Meeting on February 26th, and Little River Wetlands Project meeting on March 12th to share the watershed management plan status and promote the cost-share program for implementation of best management practices.
A Nutrient Management Workshop was held January 7, 2015. Thirty participants attended the event. Matt Prible, a local manure applicator, discussed using variable rate technology to apply manure based on soil/crop needs. He highlighted the costs and benefits. Dan Coffin, from Soil & Plant Nutritional Concepts provided information on the 4Rs of Nutrient Stewardship. The Right source at the Right rate at the Right time and in the Right place. Mike Werling, Adams Co. no-till farmer provided practical experience in adopting Nutrient Stewardship with conservation practices (no-till and cover crops). Kelley Barkell, USDA-NRCS District Conservationist provided information on program financial and technical assistance for Best Management Practices (BMPs). Four agricultural vendors also displayed products and services available to farmers.
The “Wetlands, Buffers and 2-Stage Ditch field day was held June 26, 2014 at the City of Bluffton’s Native Habitat Area on Elm Grove Road, Bluffton. Nineteen participants learned that the wetlands reduce flooding, recharges ground water, improves water quality of the Wabash River, protects biological diversity of the area, and provides recreational opportunities. Birds, butterfly and deer were all observed during the event. Participants also toured the 2-stage ditch which removes sediment, nitrogen and phosphorus from the stream, increases the holding capacity and is more stable than a conventional shaped ditch.
A “Manure Management Workshop” was held December 11th, 2013. Thirty-six participants learned about the importance of soil sampling to determine where to apply animal manure, the value of manure as a fertilizer, Category 14 Rule updates, and USDA programs available to assist operators.
A “Septic System Workshop” held was held October 21, 2013 following the Wells Co. Regional Sewer District regular meeting. Thirty-six people attended the meeting to hear from Alice Quinn of the Indiana State Department of Health about on-site septic systems, what failure means, and why they need to be inspected and maintained. Local septic installer, Lewis Brown presided over the “Funeral for a Septic System” to everyone’s delight.
Anyone wanting to assist with future clean-up efforts should contact the Upper Wabash River Basin Commission or Wells Co. Soil and Water Conservation District.
The education event hosted by the Upper Wabash River Basin Commission in cooperation with the Bluffton City Parks Department was held Saturday, July 27th on the banks of the Wabash River near the Kehoe Park pavilion. Nine participants learned about the animals and insects that live in and around the Wabash River. The participants were able to find a variety of aquatic insects that are indicators of water quality. Hoosier Riverwatch trained volunteers also lead participants through water quality chemical analysis procedures used to evaluate the health of the Wabash River.
The Upper Wabash River Basin Commission in cooperation with the Bluffton City Parks Department hosted, “Living with the Wabash River,” program on Saturday, June 15th on the banks of the Wabash River near the Kehoe Park pavilion. Eight participants learned what makes the Wabash River a unique environment for living creatures that range from a fraction of an inch to over 7 feet; what makes the river dirty; and how the Wabash River improves the quality of our lives. Hoosier Riverwatch trained volunteers lead participants through various water quality chemical analysis procedures and identification of aquatic insect larva which helps measure the water quality of the river.
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