A meeting in north-central Iowa today will see an unusual pairing of farmers and fisheries biologists. Their goal is to restore fish habitats in the region. Chris Jones, with the Iowa Soybean Association, says the meeting of the group “Fishers and Farmers” will look at the progress being made to improve the quality of the Boone River.

Jones says, “All of our projects are implemented on private lands and we have the objective of enhancing fish habitat and bringing value to farms and producers.” The group also has projects underway in Missouri and Minnesota but the Boone River effort is the current focal point in Iowa.

He says, “A lot of work has been conducted in the Boone River watershed over the years by the Iowa Soybean Association, Agriculture’s Clean Water Alliance, the Nature Conservancy and others, to enhance water quality and improve agricultural performance at the same time.”

The group works to help farmers manage their inputs and the nutrients so runoff is minimized and waterways are preserved. He says the Boone River is very diverse in hosting varieties of fish. He says the waterway is of great ecological importance.

“Because of all the work that’s been conducted in the Boone River watershed, the National Fish Habitat Action Plan selected it as one of ten ‘Waters to Watch’ nationwide,” Jones says. “What that means is, there’s a lot of work being conducted there and a lot of promising things happening that we feel are really going to enhance the condition of the watershed and the water.”

The presentation will be held at Kendall Young Library in Webster City starting at 5 P.M. Learn more at www.fishersandfarmers.org.

By Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City