Scientists are one step closer to understanding how dangerous contaminants from fecal matter are entering private wells in Kewaunee County. New research by U.S. Department of Agriculture microbiologist Mark Borchardt shows nitrate and coliform in the water mostly comes from agriculture — and…

ALMA — George Howe quoted Senegalese forestry engineer Baba Dioum, saying, “In the end, we will conserve only what we love; we will love only what we understand; and we will understand only what we are taught.”

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate confirmed former coal industry lobbyist Andrew Wheeler to lead the Environmental Protection Agency, despite concerns by Democrats and one Republican about regulatory rollbacks he’s made in eight months as the agency’s acting chief.

BLANCHARDVILLE — April Prusia, an Iowa native with experience as a vegetable farmer, was a vegetarian for many years before meeting her partner, Steve Fabos, and moving to the Driftless Area. Settling in at Dorothy’s Range, their farm named after Fabos’ mother, she left that lifestyle behind…

The eastern North American monarch population estimate for the winter of 2018-2019 reports a population size of 6.05 hectares, it was recently announced by World Wildlife Fund-Mexico and the Comisión Nacional de Áreas Naturales Protegidas.

Cities, villages, towns, counties, regional planning commissions, tribal governments and special purpose lake, sewage, or sanitary districts have until April 15 to submit applications for funding to help reduce urban nonpoint source pollution and help manage storm water.

RENEW Wisconsin’s Solar for Good program has issued 36 grants to Wisconsin nonprofit organizations to install new solar-electric systems. Altogether, these grants will total more than $445,000 and lead to more than $4.5 million in new solar investment.

MADISON — The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection has a long history of conducting surveys for pests; in fact, DATCP has been annually observing crop pest activity through its Pest Survey Program since 1915.

Salt and sand contribute greatly to lake, river and stream pollution. Once it’s spread on parking lots, streets, sidewalks and driveways, it’s on its way to the nearest surface water and cannot be recovered.

On Saturday, Feb. 16, the Madison Area Woodland Owners Conference will feature presentations focusing on Snapshot Wisconsin, a state wildlife program; preparing for a meeting with your forester; forest harvesting — methods and more; pruning to improve your woods; and fantastic fungi — movers…

Calculating nitrogen use efficiency can be relatively simple and offers insight into how nitrogen management can be altered in order to achieve economically optimum yields while reducing nutrient losses to the environment.

The results of the first round of groundwater sampling in Grant, Iowa and Lafayette counties in southwest Wisconsin show widespread problems with well-water contamination by nitrate and coliform bacteria. Results of random samples from 301 private wells were released last week by researchers…

New Zealand mudsnails, an invasive species of snail, have recently been verified in two new streams in Dane County, prompting the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to ask anglers to help prevent the spread of this organism to other water bodies.

Rapidly growing numbers of cases of chronic wasting disease are appearing on deer and elk farms and hunting ranches in Wisconsin at the same time the state has pulled back on rules and procedures designed to limit the spread of the fatal brain disease among its captive and wild deer.

The Flyway Film Festival will present two new documentaries about the Driftless Region, the unique geographical area in which the festival itself is located. The films will be shown in a special program entitled “This Land” at 11 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 21, at the Flyway Minema in Pepin.

The Fund for Lake Michigan, a private Milwaukee-based foundation, has awarded a $100,000 grant to the Sand County Foundation to assist the village of Grafton with water quality improvement, supporting outreach to farmers to implement conservation practices in the Milwaukee River watershed th…

EVANSVILLE — When someone mentions something about bees, the first thing many think of are honeybees, which have received a lot of press in recent years due to their decline.

MADISON (AP) — An appeals court has rejected efforts by a group of landowners to block a proposed frac sand operation in western Wisconsin, but the ruling could allow future legal challenges based on damages that haven’t yet occurred.

Wisconsin farmers, ranchers or foresters who go above and beyond in the care and management of natural resources can now be nominated for the 2018 Wisconsin Leopold Conservation Award.

STEVENS POINT — Wild parsnip has been found across Wisconsin. The dangerous invasive species can cause serious skin burns if a person comes into contact with the sap of the plant. At a June 20 field day in Portage County, Wood County Conservationist Shane Wucherpfennig said in central Wiscon…

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources will host a webinar at 2 p.m. on June 26 as part of the implementation of a new law that affects projects impacting some Wisconsin wetlands. The law, Act 183, will go into effect on July 1 and establishes permit exemptions on placing fill materia…

Wisconsin officials found elevated levels of toxic heavy metals near a frac sand mine spill that sent millions of gallons of sludge into a tributary, carrying it downstream into the Mississippi River.

KNAPP — To create the conservationists of the future, it is important to make sure children understand how elements in nature are connected, according to Ka Ying Vang, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service soil conservationist in the Dunn County office.

The public comment period for the Minnesota Department of Agriculture’s proposed Groundwater Protection Rule is open through July 26. Public comments on the rule can be made on the Office of Administrative Hearings website at www.mda.state.mn.us/​gwprhearingnotice.

A team from Ladysmith High School was named overall high school winner in the Wisconsin Land and Water’s Envirothon, sponsored by the Outdoor Heritage Education Center and other state organizations, on April 13 at the Wisconsin Lions camp in Rosholt. The school will represent Wisconsin at th…

The fate of Meteor Timber’s new frac sand facility in Jackson and Monroe counties soon will be determined. The decision comes after a 2017 complaint filed against the company’s permit took issue with the permitting process and the company’s desire to fill 16 acres of unique wetlands.

BELMONT — Creating maps for invasive plant species is like a classic game of “Battleship,” according to Jeff Jackson, stewardship specialist for Southwest Badger Resource Conservation and Development Council.

BELMONT — Driving to Belmont from Madison, associate professor and UW-Extension specialist Mark Renz spotted several invasive plant species along the roadside. It isn’t uncommon to find invasive species rooted there; some of them were even planted by the Wisconsin Department of Transportatio…

The Pepin/​Pierce County Farmers Union will host an educational forum on water quality from 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday, April 15, at the Plum City Senior Center, 501 Main St., Plum City.

A sign-up is underway in Wisconsin for financial assistance available through the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative for designated watersheds. Eligible applications received by May 18 at U.S. Department of Agriculture Service Centers in Wisconsin will be evaluated for this funding.

LA CROSSE (AP) — New data from the U.S. Geological Survey shows the country’s production of industrial sand increased more than 36 percent in 2017 as Wisconsin again led the nation.

When county or city elected officials are approached about a wind energy farm, what are the first steps in creating an ordinance? What kinds of things need to be considered? “Wind Energy Ordinances,” an information guide by the Center for Rural Affairs, may help.