Toward this website’s role as the central source for all wild bobwhite conservation information, this page highlights current NBCI/NBTC-related messages, updates and news, as well as assorted other wild quail news items of potential interest from sources around the nation.
Quail Forever, Field & Stream Invite Bloomfield, Missouri Area Residents to Become Conservation Heroes
Magazine Joins Quail Forever Chapter to Improve Missouri Quail Habitat
Event is Open to the Public
St. Paul, Minn. – On Saturday, June 15, Field & Stream will join the Bootheel Bobwhites Chapter of Quail Forever, and local volunteers in a one-day, hands-on outdoor conservation project to aid the group’s efforts to improve quail habitat in Missouri, as part of the magazine’s Hero for a Day program. Read more about the bobwhite habitat effort HERE.
NBCI has used the recent drought to work with agricultural interests in Washington and beyond to give serious consideration to the use of drought-tolerant, warm-season native grasses in livestock operations. An increasing number of agricultural interests, including publications, are picking up on the value of native grasses for livestock producers ... and wildlife. Here's another story from the Southeast Farm Press, this one regarding the value of native grasses in Alabama:
"A strange thing happened on the way toward settling North America. The cattle first brought to this continent centuries ago quickly eliminated native grass stands through overgrazing, leaving European settlers scrambling for transplanted grasses and clover.
"Consequently, those pastureland grasses we typically assume are as American as apple pie — bermudagrass and Kentucky bluegrass, for example — aren't.
"We regularly plant 50 to 60 forage species, and hardly any of these are native grasses," says Don Ball, an Alabama Cooperative Extension System forage specialist and Auburn University professor of agronomy and soils.
"Bermudagrass presumably first arrived in cattle feed brought over by Fernando de Soto. By the 19thcentury, it was being used as both a pasture grass and as a way to reduce soil erosion.
"Likewise, Kentucky bluegrass is anything but Kentuckian. It grew in Europe and Africa before it was brought to North America by early settlers."
Native warm-season grasses fair well during drought, and livestock and forage producers are turning to them for these benefits, NRCS scientists say.
Many landowners are converting a portion of their land to these grasses and other native plants, taking advantage of their benefits, including tolerance to drought, food for livestock, habitat for wildlife and other ecosystem services.
A native plant is one that has grown in an area since before human settlement and was not brought in more recently from other parts of the world. Natives, when planted in the right place, grow stronger and yield more benefits than non-natives.
“They are the ultimate multi-use range and land management tools because of their tremendous capabilities,” said Kyle Brazil, USDA’s Farm Service Agency National Bobwhite Conservation Initiative Agricultural Policy coordinator. Read more about the benefits of native grasses to producers and wildlife HERE.