INDIANAPOLIS — Corteva Agriscience has signed on as a key program sponsor for the National Wild Turkey Federation’s Energy for Wildlife Rights of Way Habitat Endorsement Program. The program encourages electric utilities and pipelines to capitalize on the vast opportunity that rights-of-way present in providing critical habitat for wildlife while still maintaining reliable energy. It’s estimated that these areas comprise nearly 10 million acres across the United States.
“Corteva Agriscience is honored and excited to sponsor such a groundbreaking initiative,” says Damon Palmer, U.S. Pasture and Land Management Leader at Corteva Agriscience. “As an advocate for an Integrated Vegetation Management (IVM) approach, the National Wild Turkey Federation has developed a formalized program to help utilities advance biodiversity through habitat conservation for wildlife and pollinators using IVM methods.”
Through the Energy for Wildlife program, the National Wild Turkey Federation works alongside energy partners, surface landowners and a variety of stakeholders to promote the installation and maintenance of biodiverse habitat. Beyond benefits to habitat, utilities using IVM principles demonstrate a strong commitment to conservation and established industry best management practices. This not only benefits wildlife habitat but also can serve to improve landowner relations and help realize significant cost benefits with proper maintenance.
“We recognize the tremendous habitat enhancement potential of the nation’s energy rights-of-way,” says Steve Barlow, Director of Energy Partnerships with the National Wild Turkey Federation. “Proper long-term maintenance methods can help utilities capitalize on that opportunity while realizing cost benefits and ensuring reliable energy delivery. The purpose behind the program is to encourage the development and maintenance of diverse early successional habitat on rights-of-way for the benefit of both utilities and wildlife.”
Energy companies that wish to participate can enroll their rights-of-way where IVM is practiced to the Integrated Habitat Management level. This level is an elevated approach to vegetation management that encourages practices such as selective herbicide applications to help maintain compatible plant species deemed favorable for wildlife; individual plant treatment applications; prescribed fire and reseeding of native flora; and even practices such as forming brush piles from trimmed limbs instead of chipping or removing them.
Long-term vegetation management practices on rights-of-way has shown economic, aesthetic and wildlife habitat benefits. Through some of its decades-long research collaborations, Corteva has seen firsthand how rights-of-way can be selectively managed to support reliable energy service and a diverse plant community for wildlife habitat. For example, IVM has proven to be more cost-efficient and shown increased biodiversity when compared with mechanical-only methods.
This information is critical in helping utility managers implement the proper practices to meet the needs of their industry, the public and wildlife.
To help energy providers meet the program’s criteria, Corteva Agriscience offers a robust portfolio of selective herbicides, including TerraVue™, Milestone® and Vastlan® herbicides. These can be used to control invasive plants and incompatible woody species with little-to-no damage to surrounding desirable vegetation — especially when applied using individual plant treatments.
For vegetation managers interested in learning more about the Energy for Wildlife Rights of Way Habitat Endorsement Program, please visit efw.NWTF.org/ and follow Corteva Agriscience Vegetation Management at VegetationMgmt.com and on Twitter.
About Corteva Agriscience
Corteva Agriscience is a publicly traded, global pure-play agriculture company that provides farmers around the world with the most complete portfolio in the industry - including a balanced and diverse mix of seed, crop protection and digital solutions focused on maximizing productivity to enhance yield and profitability. With some of the most recognized brands in agriculture and an industry-leading product and technology pipeline well positioned to drive growth, the company is committed to working with stakeholders throughout the food system as it fulfills its promise to enrich the lives of those who produce and those who consume, ensuring progress for generations to come. Corteva Agriscience became an independent public company on June 1, 2019, and was previously the Agriculture Division of DowDuPont. More information can be found at www.corteva.com.
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About the National Wild Turkey Federation
When the National Wild Turkey Federation was founded in 1973, there were about 1.3 million wild turkeys in North America. After decades of work, that number hit a historic high of almost 7 million turkeys. To succeed, the NWTF stood behind science-based conservation and hunters’ rights. The NWTF Save the Habitat. Save the Hunt. initiative is a charge that mobilizes science, fundraising and devoted volunteers to conserve or enhance more than 4 million acres of essential wildlife habitat, recruit at least 1.5 million hunters and open access to 500,000 acres for hunting. For more information, visit NWTF.org.
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 Pennsylvania State. Latest Research Findings: Plant and Animal Response to Rights-of-Way Treatments. https://sites.psu.edu/transmissionlineecology/.
2 Goodfellow, J. W. 2019. The Cost-Efficiency of IVM: A Comparison of Vegetation Management Strategies for Utility Rights-of-Way.
™ ® Trademarks of Dow AgroSciences, DuPont or Pioneer, and their affiliated companies or their respective owners. TerraVue has not yet received regulatory approvals; approvals are pending. The information presented here is not an offer for sale. When treating areas in and around roadside or utility rights-of-way that are or will be grazed, hayed or planted to forage, important label precautions apply regarding harvesting hay from treated sites, using manure from animals grazing on treated areas or rotating the treated area to sensitive crops. See the product label for details. State restrictions on the sale and use of Milestone apply. Consult the label before purchase or use for full details. Vastlan is not registered for sale or use in all states. Contact your state pesticide regulatory agency to determine if a product is registered for sale or use in your state. Always read and follow label directions.