The Lyon County Soil and Water Conservation District needs volunteer rain gauge monitors in the following townships: Amiret, Clifton, Coon Creek, Island Lake, Lake Marshall, Monroe, Sodus, Vallers, and Westerheim. For more information please contact Anita Cauwels at 507-532-8207 Ext 3 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Ecology Bus visits have been an ongoing educational program for a number of years. This Bus, which is fully equiped as a classroom brings interactive experiments to upper elementary and middle school students in Lyon County. During 2019 the Prairie Ecology Bus visited Garvin Park with the Marshall Middle School students to do water testing. Over the last year Russell Middle School and Tracy Middle School were other schools doing environmental and conservation projects.
Environmental Fair is a two day event held in September at our new location -Shetek Environmental Learning Center Sessions by expert presenters in fields of soil health, trees, prairie environment, fisheries, glacier impact history, water health, and wetlands are held plus visits from the MN Science Museum and the Great Plains Zoo. In the fall of 2019, 1500 students from Southwestern MN attended the two-day event at the Shetek Environmental Learning Center.
Arbor Day is promoted with staff available to do school presentations.
PROGRAMS AND SERVICES
Conservation Planning and Construction - The SWCD along with its partner agency, the Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS), provides technical assistance for landowners to;
- Conduct a site investigation with the owner/operator
- Work with the owner/operator to determine the best management practice for the given situation
- Survey and design the project
- Produce a rough cost-estimate
- Provide them with a designee for submission of bids
- Perform a pre-construction conference with the contractor and owner/operator, and Supervise construction and certify completion of the project
State Cost Share Program provides landowners/occupiers with financial assistance to offset the cost of installing conservation practices that protect and improve water quality by controlling soil erosion and reducing sedimentation . The SWCD provides up to 75% cost share on conservation practices such as Water & Sediment Control Basins. All practices must be approved for cost-share prior to construction and landowners are reimbursed upon completion of the project.
Other Cost-Share/Incentive Programs are available as the SWCD works with other agencies to provide cost-share and incentive programs to owners/operators. Besides working with other area SWCD's we work with the Yellow Medicine River Watershed District and the Redwood-Cottonwood Rivers Control Area. Depending on the grants available, funding varies from year to year. A variety of federal cost-share programs are available to help landowners/operators pay for installing best management conservation practices. SWCD and NRCS technicians will work to access appropriate funding.
Wetland Conservation Act (WCA) Program is administered locally by the Lyon SWCD in cooperation with Lyon County. Contact Luke Olson at 507 532-8207, ext. 3 for more information.
Walk-In-Access Program is an opportunity for landowners to open their land for public hunting.
Reinvest in Minnesota (RIM) Programs and rates are available by contacting or emailing Mark Peper, Pheasants Forever, CREP Outreach & Implementation Technician at the Lyon SWCD office 507 532-8207, ext. 3 - email@example.com
OTHER PROGRAMS INCLUDE;
Ag Best Management Practices (BMP) Loan Program is handled by Lyon SWCD providing the application and as the contact agency. For more information and an application contact the SWCD office at 507 532-8207, ext. 3.
Observation Well monitoring is contracted with the Minnesota Department of natural Resources to measure the water level in a well located in the county within the City of Marshall.
Rainfall Monitoring is done in cooperation with the Minnesota Climatology office to record rainfall and snowfall in Lyon County. Volunteers record the amount of moisture that we receive on a monthly basis and mail the reports into the SWCD office and then forwarded to the state office. This information is important to them as this helps determine if there is potential for flooding and the likelihood for drought conditions.
County Local Water Plan is assisted by the Lyon SWCD with implemention. This plan is a 10 year plan with a 5 year implementation period adopted by the SWCD. For more imformation about the Plan visit our website under "Local Water Management Plan".