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Cover for user guide for field staff

Agricultural Conservation Planning Framework User Guide for Field Staff

The purpose of this user guide is to serve as a reference for conservation practitioners working with the Agricultural Conservation Planning Framework (ACPF) and ACPF results in a watershed context. This user guide is not written for ArcGIS users, but for field staff and watershed planners who work with GIS specialists and ACPF results to implement conservation plans and practices. The user guide reviews the results from each of the ACPF toolboxes to provide an understanding of how these results are created, what goes into producing them, and to encourage conservation practitioners to understand how they may be used to inform conservation planning, broadly speaking. The intention of this user guide is to familiarize conservation practitioners with information about what’s going on behind the scenes in the ACPF toolboxes so practitioners can work with a GIS specialist running the ACPF to get the best results possible for watersheds of interest.

Screenshot of the first slide of the presentation

Identifying Conservation Practice Opportunities

This presentation by NRCS staff Steven Hefner outlines how the ACPF helps identifies conservation practice opportunities on the landscape and how the tool can be used as a part of NRCS area-wide watershed assessments​

Cover page of the ACPF User Manual

ACPF Version 5 User Manual

ACPF Version 5 was released in the spring of 2023. Use this updated Users Manual as your reference when using Version 5 with ArcGIS Pro 3.0 and above.

Cover of ACPF use example

ACPF Use Example: Polk County Saturated Buffer Project

Have you heard about the Batch and Build project in Polk County, Iowa? This innovative project used the ACPF and was able to get an impressive number of saturated buffers installed on the landscape in just a few short years.

list of Map Making Tips for Color blind producers

Making Better Maps for Color Blind Producers

Roughly 1 in 20 people have some sort of color vision deficiency. Color blindness is a genetic condition that occurs more frequently in men (1 in 10) than women. It can occur when there is a problem with the color-sensing cones in the eye’s nerve cells. This factsheet has tips and examples for developing accessible maps for color blind producers.

First page of Journal of Hydrology Article

Evaluating watershed-based optimized decision support framework for conservation practice placement in the Plum Creek Minnesota

This study develops an integrated decision support framework to site conservation placement opportunities at the field-scale using LiDAR-hydro-conditioned DEM and other secondary data. Using python coding, this framework integrates three robust models namely Prioritize, Target and Measure Application (PTMApp), Agricultural Conservation Planning Framework (ACPF) and Hydrological Simulation Program FORTRAN-Scenario Application Manager (HSPF-SAM).

First page of Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Article

Agricultural conservation practices in Iowa watersheds: comparing actual implementation with practice potential

To identify potential locations for conservation practices in Iowa watersheds, the ACPF is being used. In addition, the location of existing implemented practices are being identified by the Iowa Best Management Practices Mapping Project (IBMP). From these two products, a methodology was developed to compare the differences between actual implementation and practice placement potential.

Cover of Journal of SWCS from July 2020

Farmer engagement using a precision approach to watershed-scale conservation planning: What do we know?

The results from semi-structured in-depth interviews conducted with farmers in four watersheds in the US Midwest aimed at better understanding farmers' perceptions of targeting when they receive targeted conservation options for fields they farm.

Cover of Journal of Environmental Management Article

Lessons learned from using a decision-support tool for precision placement of conservation practices in six agricultural watersheds in the US midwest

The findings from semi-structured in-depth interviews conducted with 21 conservation professionals in six watersheds in the US Midwest who have used the ACPF in their watershed planning and engagement work. Results suggest that the ACPF encourages conservation professionals to think at a watershed scale, supports their approach to conservation planning, and helps them in watershed planning and stakeholder engagement.

Cover of Journal of SWCS from July 2020

Riparian catchments: A landscape approach to link uplands with riparian zones for agricultural and ecosystem conservation

Effective coupling of upland and riparian conservation as a system of practices, is necessary to ensure water quality, water supply, agricultural sustainability, and ecosystem biodiversity and integrity. This is not an easy task, nor an intuitive one. Therefore, riparian catchments is needed that helps planners and stakeholders visualize strategies to place conservation practices in sequences that are adapted to landscape-specific attributes.