Job Opportunity - Stearns SWCD Soil Conservationist – Lakeshed Specialist


Position Description: The Soil Conservationist - Lakeshed Specialist is a professional position and requires a diverse background in natural resource planning and protection, problem evaluation, and conservation practice application. This is a full-time permanent position. The individual will work with local, state and federal agencies to implement the identified objectives of the Local Water Resources Protection and Management Program (Local Water Plan). This position will be involved with the Wetland Conservation Act, Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS), educational activities, and other natural resource protection and restoration projects, and planning activities.

Closing Date:
Friday, May 20, 2016
Interview Date: Friday, June 17, 2016 (Successful candidates will be notified)

To download the application and job description please click here

FREE Nitrate Testing Clinic - Sauk Centre

Testing will be done at the
Sauk River Watershed District Office, 524 4th Street South, Sauk Centre
Thurs, May 12 from 4PM-7PM

Instructions for collecting samples can be found here.

Water samples may also be dropped off at the Stearns County SWCD Office, Marketplace Mall  

***Tree Pickup Information***

Customers who pre-ordered trees from the Stearns County SWCD can pick up their tree order the following days:

Friday, April 29            8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Saturday, April 30       8 a.m. to 11 a.m.

--These are the only times the trees can be picked up--

You can pick up your tree order at the MN Department of Transportation (DOT) building in Albany (not the Stearns County Hwy. building).  The DOT building (light yellow) is across I-94 from the City of Albany, on the south side of Stearns Cty. Rd. 10, just east of the Fleet Supply store. From I-94, Take Cty. Rd. 10 south to the stop sign, and then turn right, following Cty. Rd. 10 for 1/8 mile (34916 County Road 10). A sign will be posted along Cty. Rd. 10. 

Any order not picked up during scheduled times will be charged a $25 late fee. Call Lori or Jason at 320-251-7800, Ext. 3, if you have questions.

To view which trees are still available click here...

BWSR Seeks Comments on Buffer, Soil Loss Program Implementation

The Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources (BWSR) is charged with overseeing program implementation of the buffer law.  The agency is currently seeking public comment on key components of its Buffer and Excessive Soil Loss programs.

The Requests for Comment and supporting documents are available on the BWSR Buffer Program website: http://bwsr.state.mn.us/buffers/ and include specific questions related to program development.  BWSR is looking for feedback on:

  • Program timeline
  • Technical aspects of the program
  • Administrative processes - Other Waters - waters not covered under the DNRs mapping process as determined by the local soil and water conservation district
  • Process for the Soil Erosion law implementation
Comments from stakeholders are a key part of the process, and will be considered during program development.  The BWSR Board will review draft policy and guidance for the buffer program at its June 2016 Board meeting.  The Soil Loss program will undergo rulemaking in the fall.  For information on the DNR Buffer Mapping Project, visit http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/buffers/index.html.

Information and comments on buffer and soil loss program implementation will be accepted until 4:30 p.m. on May 4, 2016. Comments may be submitted via email to buffers.bwsr@state.mn.us or via U.S. mail to David Weirens, Asst. Director for Programs and Policy, BWSR, 520 Lafayette Road, St. Paul, MN 55155.

Innovative Buffer Program Benefits Farmers and Surface Water

The Sauk River Watershed District (SRWD) is taking applications for a unique program that offers farmers a cost effective means to make buffers part of their operation. The SRWD "Hayed Buffer Program" was introduced in 2015 as an economical alternative for farmers that would like to leave a buffer along their ditches or streams but retain the freedom to harvest the hay crop.

More info here

The Lake Koronis Project

The Stearns County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) has received a Clean Water Partnership Grant from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) to work with the public in an effort to protect and/or improve the water quality of Lake Koronis. Click here for more information.

Fitting Cover Crops into Your Rotation

Cover crops are an excellent way to build organic matter, protect soil from erosion, fight weeds, capture nutrients, and even provide supplemental forage; they help mimic a natural system where there is cover year round when interseeded into or planted after cash crops. When planting cover crops you can look at your specific goals and consider legumes for a nitrogen source, nutrient recovery and increased infiltration with deep rooted brassicas (i.e. turnips and radishes), or try a mixture that will cover multiple resource concerns.  One helpful tool is the Cover Crop Decision Tool offered by the Midwest Cover Crops Council http://www.mccc.msu.edu/index.htm.

Stearns County SWCD Facebook Feed

Conservation Buffers

Conservation buffers are strips of vegetation placed in the landscape to influence ecological processes and provide a variety of goods and services to us. They are called by many names, including wildlife corridors, greenways, windbreaks, and filter strips to name just a few.

Benefits that conservation buffers provide to us include protecting soil resources, improving air and water quality, enhancing fish and wildlife habitat, and beautifying the landscape. In addition, buffers offer landowners an array of economic opportunities including protection and enhancement of existing enterprises.

find out more here

Stearns County SWCD Supervisors Leading the Way on Agricultural Water Quality

The Stearns County Soil and Water Conservation District’s Board of Supervisors are leading by example on the vital issue of agricultural water quality stewardship.

The four farming supervisors on the board—Dave Brinkman, Tom Gregory, Chuck Uphoff and Dave Weller—have all earned certification under the Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program (MAWQCP). Minnesota’s Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program certifies farmers and landowners for protecting water quality through a comprehensive whole-farm assessment that puts farmers together with local professionals to determine where risks to water quality exist on their farm, and empowers them to fix those risks when they’re found.

Read More Here


SWCD Press Releases

Current Releases:

- Innovative Buffer Program Benefits
- Sustainable Agricultural Cover Crops Demonstration
Buffer Legislation Update
MAWQCP Third Street Brewery OPen House
Women Caring for the Land Session
Stearns Students to Complete at State Envirothon
SWCD Partners with Third Street Bewhouse
Climate Adaptation Award

Past Press Releases Click here...

Other News Click here...

greenstarfarms.org - How Does Your Stewardship Rate?

No-Till University

FREE posters available!
Click here

The On-Farm Network® is here.

The Stearns County SWCD is partnering with the On-Farm Network® to assist farmers in implementing stalk nitrate evaluations to help them fine tune Nitrogen management in corn production.  Click here for more information.

Learn about Pheasants Forever.

Check out the video at the bottom of the Pheasants Forever page. Click here...

Want to learn about the soil on your property?

Check out the Web Soil Survey Click here...

Department of Natural Resources is taking tree orders (minimum order 500 trees). Click here for more information.

Mississippi River Basin Initiative Program

The Stearns SWCD and partners have been awarded over $4 million for projects that will protect and restore the waters of the Sauk River. Working with many partners, the SWCD will provide assistance to producers to reduce nitrogen and phosphorus while supporting agricultural productively and wildlife habitat. Learn more...



Problems or Questions about this website? Please contact ben.ruley@mn.nacdnet.net

All contents are the property of Stearns County SWCD. The District's goal is to provide quality and accurate information.
All information within this site, though, is subject to change and should only serve as a guideline for the District's services and procedures.
For the most current and accurate information, please contact the District at (320)251-7800, Extension 3.

Office Hours 8:00 AM - 4:30 PM Mon-Fri

110 2nd Street South, Waite Park, MN 56387 | Ph: 320-251-7800 x3 | Fax: 855-205-6907

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