No Till
No TIll Soybeans on Corn

Agriculture Programs & Services

SWCD Cost Sharing and Technical Assistance

Barron County receives annual funding from the State of Wisconsin to correct environmental concerns. Installing conservation practices on your land helps prevent soil erosion and improves water quality. Barron County offers cost sharing and technical assistance to landowners to achieve compliance with state agricultural performance standards and programs. 

 Agriculture Performance Standards

The Agriculture Performance Standards are defined in state law (NR 151) and can be found at the following link (click here)  

Wisconsin Farmland Preservation Program

The Wisconsin Farmland Preservation Program is a state run, county administered program that provides landowners with an opportunity to claim farmland preservation tax credits through participation in the program. These tax credits are income tax credits that are applied against tax liability and are available for the 2010 tax year (paid in 2011) and beyond.

Manure Storage


Barron County was one of the first counties in the state to adopt an ordinance that requires all new manure storage facilities be liquid tight and meet NRCS standards. The ordinance applies to construction of any new animal waste storage facility or alteration to an existing structure. The ordinance applies to all animal waste storage structures regardless of size. All new facilities or upgrades must meet specific design standards and be approved by an engineer before a Waste Storage Permit can be obtained from the Barron County SWCD. This permit costs $250. The Department provides planning and technical assistance to farmers throughout the county. The ordinance also requires and assists in the abandonment of idle manure storage facilities, which also requires a permit ($100).


Once these facilities are no longer being used, there is a potential for groundwater contamination as well as other environmental or health concerns. Please contact our office for information regarding cost sharing opportunities to assist with proper abandonment of these facilities. 

Conservation Walkover

Department staff offers a Conservation Walkover program to provide assistance to landowners to address issues such as water quality, erosion control, grazing management and wildlife habitat improvement on their property. If you have a concern you would like department staff to review, please call the office to schedule a site visit.  

Wildlife Damage Program

Starting in 1996, the SWCD administered the Wisconsin Wildlife Damage Program in Barron County.  Farmers enjoy seeing wildlife, but when wildlife eats large quantities of their crops, it’s a different story.  When the economic loss to wildlife exceeds $500, the farmer may be eligible for compensation.  The Wisconsin program covers damage done by deer, bear, geese and wild turkey.  Farmers who request compensation must agree to a damage abatement plan or population control measures.

In 2001, the SWCD passed administration of the program over to an agency that specializes in wildlife damage control, which is the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS).  A representative of APHIS is located in Cumberland and can be contacted at 715-822-3227. 

Erosion Control Mulching

The department owns two mulchers available to work with landowners throughout the county to protect agricultural sites.  Mulching material is not provided. 

Erosion Control Seed

The department sells an excellent sod-forming grass/legume seed mixture for waterways, construction sites, eroding slopes and other critical sites.  This seed, which is sold at cost, comes in one acre bags and meets the NRCS technical standards for seeding of waterways, headlands, and other critical sites.  

Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Programs - partner agency

Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP)

EQIP provides technical and financial help to landowners for conservation practices that protect soil and water quality.

Grassed waterways, stream fencing, critical area planting, terraces, manure management systems including storage structures and barnyard runoff protection, and many other conservation practices are eligible for EQIP.  Agricultural producers on agricultural land are eligible. Projects are selected based on environmental value. 

Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP)

The CSP will help owners and operators of agricultural lands maintain conservation stewardship and implement and maintain additional needed conservation practices. The conservation benefits gained will keep farms and ranches more sustainable and profitable and increase the benefits provided to all Americans through improved natural resources.

For more information about NRCS programs contact the local office at 537-5645 ext. 3 or view the Wisconsin NRCS website: