Private landowners hold the key to the future of wildlife conservation and environmental quality. The goal of the private lands initiative is to help Georgia's private landowners meet their wildlife habitat and population objectives.
The Private Lands Program (PLP) includes:
- The Bobwhite Quail Initiative (BQI)
- Partnership Initiatives
- Forest Stewardship Program
- Private Lands Assistance Map
Georgia's landscape is 93% privately owned. More than 80% of Georgians are interested in wildlife and support funding wildlife education and habitat management programs. Through science-based conservation planning, landowners can more effectively reach their wildlife and natural resource goals and make sure these resources are in good condition for Georgia's future generations. Participation in these programs is voluntary. Objectives are determined by the landowner. Professional technical assistance is provided free of charge, and financial incentives for conservation practices may be available. WRD wildlife biologists are available to work with landowners to develop comprehensive wildlife management plans. They can also match landowner needs to one or more federal and state conservation programs. Assistance is available within all of Georgia's 159 counties.
Georgia’s bobwhite quail, white-tailed deer and wild turkey plate, as well as the older quail-and-deer plate, contributes directly to the Private Lands Program and Bobwhite Quail Initiative which has created critical quail and wildlife habitat. No state appropriations are allocated for private lands work involving quail and other wildlife. More info can be found at https://georgiawildlife.com/licenseplates.
How to Get Started
If wildlife is an objective for you on your property, contact the private lands program office. Our staff of professional wildlife biologists can provide technical assistance and help you develop a plan to improve your property for wildlife.
Private Lands Program
2024 Newton Road
Albany, GA 31701
The Bobwhite Quail Initiative (BQI)
BQI biologist provide technical assistance to landowners on restoring and actively managing their property to provide bobwhite habitat conditions. GADNR and Quail Forever (QF) biologist work together across the state to meet with landowners to determine the goals and objectives across their property. QF is a nonprofit conservation organization dedicated to the conservation of quail, pheasants, and other wildlife through habitat improvements, public awareness, education, and land management policies and programs. Visit www.quailforever.org to locate your local biologist for assistance or to connect with your local QF chapter. Contact a BQI biologist by calling 229-420-1183.
Technical Guidance for Farm Bill and other inter-agency programs providing conservation assistance for landowners. Private Lands Program biologists are available to assist landowners plan and navigate programs offered through the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The purpose of the Conservation Technical Assistance Program (CTA), administered by the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), is to assist landowners in planning and implementing conservation systems that:
- Reduce erosion and upstream flooding
- Improve and conserve wetlands
- Enhance fish and wildlife habitat
- Improve air quality, pasture and range condition, soil and water quality and woodlands
NRCS assistance is provided through conservation districts to landowners who want to implement conservation practices on their property. NRCS district conservationists can also provide technical assistance to landowners enrolled in Farm Bill programs. A customized conservation plan can be written that identifies the appropriate conservation practices most applicable to a landowner’s property. GADNR has biologists working with local NRCS offices throughout the state. Contact one by calling 229-420-1183.
Selected Wildlife Program Links
- Working Lands for Wildlife
- WLFW: Gopher Tortoise
- WLFW: Bobwhite Quail Southern Pine Savanna Restoration Project
- Georgia Landowner’s Guide to Conservation Resources
Forest Stewardship Program (FSP)
PLP wildlife biologists work in partnership with Georgia Forestry Commission (GFC) foresters and Georgia Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) personnel, to provide wildlife related technical assistance in developing Forest Stewardship Plans. The FSP provides technical help for landowners to manage forested property based on integrated and free advice from a team of professional soil/water experts, foresters and wildlife biologists.
Your FSP Plan will include:
- Maps that delineate locations of natural resource stand types
- Descriptions and recommendations for each
- 10-year management schedules
- Notification of special natural resource concerns such as:
- Archaeological, cultural and historical resources
- Rare, threatened and endangered species
- Financial assistance programs
- Guidance for accessing further information and services that interest you
Eligibility Requirements & Financial Incentives
Any private, non-industrial landowner with a minimum of 25 total acres, of which at least 10 is forested, is eligible. Landowners have no obligation to implement recommendations. FSP should advise you of financial incentive opportunities, of which many give priority to FSP plan holders.
Forest Stewardship Plan with a Wildlife Objective
If wildlife habitat is a primary objective of your Forest Stewardship Plan contact the private lands office at 229-420-1183. A wildlife biologist will work with a GFC forester to develop a plan that meets your objectives.
Other Private Lands Assistance Programs Provided by Georgia DNR
- Forestry for Wildlife Partnership
- Georgia’s Deer Management Assistance Program (DMAP)
- Forest Protection and Habitat Partnership Program