Iowa's Watershed Management Authorities: A Farmer and Landowner Perspective

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The following testimonial was written by Jon Bakehouse of Maple Edge Farm in Hastings, Iowa

As a farmer and landowner in rural southwest Iowa, I am no stranger to the importance of flood mitigation and water quality. We are a family farm and have been fortunate enough to farm the same acres for six generations. We want to ensure the farm is viable for generations to come. In my experiences working with my local Watershed Management Authority, I can attest to their support and effectiveness in helping us address water concerns by implementing voluntary conservation measures.

It’s hard to believe now, but in March 2019, most of the ground up to the bottom of the hill in the photo below was underwater. That year, the West Nishnabotna River exploded out of its banks during an unusually large rain event when the ground was still frozen. Our farm had been practicing no-till for decades, installed filter strips, and installed dugouts to help slow water runoff. Still, these measures did not save us from dramatic flooding.

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