As our history has shown us, exploitation of our country’s Great Plains can lead to disastrous events. Aggressive farming causes rich soil to lose all nutrients and eliminates all natural grass and trees, removing the roots which anchor the soil. A dry season, paired with soil without roots and high winds lead to the Dust Bowl of the Great Depression. As a response, the federal government has created agencies throughout history to rehabilitate the land, in order to ensure the future of agriculture on the Great Plains. Currently, the loss of habitat of native animals and insects is contributing to soil destruction and a decrease in crop production.
Since its inception in 2001, regeneration of habitat has been the main goal of High Plains Land Conservancy (HPLC). After receiving a donation of 20 acres of land from Phillips County Pheasants Forever, the HPLC got right to work using USDA government programs to design a wind break by planting Juniper trees and plum thickets and a grass seeding project with 5 species of grass, as well as creating wetlands by drilling a well. After the success of the initial 20 acres, the same Pheasants Forever chapter donated an additional 1800 acres. HPLC has used the 1820 acres to plant multiple field windbreaks, multiple grass seeding projects and drilled an additional well.
In 2015, HPLC participated in a matching grant program with Colorado Parks and Recreation, Pheasants Forever and Mule Deer Foundation. The grant has helped finance the Corners for Conservation Program which is planting pollinators designed specifically to restore habitat for birds, bees, and butterflies. Increasing the amount and diversity of plants in the High Plains by planting various flowers, grasses, and trees improves the soil, crops, plants, animals, and insects.