Aquatic Invasive Species Program
The purpose of the Roseau County Aquatic Invasive Species Prevention Program is to identify, educate and control or eradicate aquatic invasive species through watercraft inspections, treatment measures and public education. Early detection is especially crucial for invasive weed species that are highly aggressive. Ultimately, the hope is to prevent the introduction or limit the spread of aquatic invasive species at all access sites within the county.
The goals of the program are being accomplished by inspecting and mapping all locations within the county’s legal ditch systems, rivers, and streams within which aquatic invasive weed species are known to exist. This mapping will provide real time location information on a GIS layer, the control and management methods that are being used, and also to monitor effectiveness through follow-up inspections.
Roseau County partners with the Roseau Soil and Water Conservation District to coordinate planning schedules and manage logistics to allow the most efficient control methods. We will continue to be very proactive in the development of educational material for the public and the school systems on all aquatic invasive species.
Roseau SWCD also partners with Lake of the Woods SWCD to coordinate and implement the Watercraft Inspectors Program to inspect watercraft that are entering Lake of the Woods. Public awareness is one of the best methods for prevention and early detection of undesirable invasive species.
Buffer Law Program
In 2015 Governor Dayton signed in the Buffer Law (Minnesota Statute 103F.48) that requires Public Waters (streams, wetlands) and Public Ditches (county, watershed, some minor tributaries and creeks) to have permanent vegetated buffers to improve water quality in Minnesota. Runoff may affect both surface and ground waters. Landowners are ultimately responsible for buffer installation and any required maintenance thereafter.
The November 1, 2017 compliance deadline to install a 50 ft vegetative strip along public waters and November 1, 2018 compliance deadline to install a 16.5 ft vegetative strip along public ditches has passed. For those landowners or operators who have been in contact with us by phone or by stopping into our office to update us on your buffer status, we express a big “Thank You”.
Buffers that were not planted in 2019 because of wet conditions must be planted in the spring of 2020. Buffer Law has now moved into the enforcement stage. Compliance checks will start in the summer of 2020. Any parcels without the required buffer will be issued Correction Action Notice by the Roseau County Attorney and or Watershed District. You will have 11 months to establish your buffer. If after the 11 months the buffer is still not established, you be fined up to $200 per parcel per month for the first six months. If you are still out of compliance after the six months period, you will then be fined $500 per parcel per month.
The buffer area may be planted to any perennial vegetation.
Weed maintenance is required.
Buffers may be grazed and or hayed.
As ditches may still need to be cleaned out from time to time, the spoil will need to be seeded.
Buffer Exemptions: If land adjacent to Public Waters or Public Ditches is in CRP, that area of the parcel is exempt. The rest of the adjacent land that is not in CRP, but still within that same parcel, will fall under the Buffer Program requirements.
Monitoring Plan for Compliance Tracking: The Roseau SWCD will be reviewing 1/3 of the parcels adjacent to Public Waters and Public Ditches each year. Roseau County will be split into thirds from west to east and the order in which these parcels are checked will vary from year to year. Random spot check will also be done on parcels outside of the scheduled area each year.
Important links to visit regarding the Buffer Program:
Map of Areas Requiring Buffer
Board of Water and Soil Resources (BWSR) Buffer Program webpage for landowners: https://bwsr.state.mn.us/minnesota-buffer-law
County Agriculture Inspection
Identify common and invasive weeds
Eradicate / control invasive weeds
Conduct field checks
Check sites identified by called in complaints
The Roseau County Soil and Water Conservation District is the Weed Inspector for the County and administers the Minnesota Noxious Weed Law, seed testing and inspection, and commercial applicator testing for Roseau County.
On Minnesota Noxious Weed Law—
Anyone receiving farm program payments, as well as anyone enrolled in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) are required to control all noxious weeds and other problem weeds on their acreages under contract. Townships may require that roadsides be mowed along property adjacent to landowner’s property.
Under the standard operating procedures of the Minnesota’s noxious weed law, an individual is considered to be in violation if no action is taken towards controlling or eradicating noxious weeds from producing viable seeds and spreading.
If a land inspection finds that noxious weeds were allowed to go to seed, the landowner will be considered in violation of the state noxious weed law, and may be assessed a payment reduction of $30.00/acre.
If a weed problem exists on a landowner's field and clipping is needed to control the infestation during the primary nesting season (June 1 – August 1), all it takes is a phone call to the FSA office (218.463.2452) or the County Ag Inspector’s office (218.463.1903) to authorize the action.
Any complaints received regarding weed infestations for all lands in Roseau County will be taken care of with the utmost confidentiality to the caller.
Our educational outreach includes the Envirothon, Soil Stewardship Week, newsletter, fair booth and Long Lake Conservation Camp. (Long Lake, Soil Stewardship, and the fair booth education activities were cancelled for 2020. We anticipate that pandemic restrictions will not lessen in time for most of these activities in 2021.)
We provide registration fees for one week of summer camp for two students each year. This classic summer camp experience is full of fun at the lake and exploration in the woods! Campers spend time in the outdoors learning recreation skills such as canoeing, archery, orienteering, GPS and camping. In addition, campers spend time honing their survival skills by building small cooking fires and shelters, and spending a night under the stars.
Requirements are: 1) students need to be Roseau County residents and 2) ages 10-15.
Students from Roseau County in the past have really enjoyed this camp. The camp is located at 28952 438th Lane, Palisade, MN 56469. Check out their website at www.longlakecc.org.
Flower Dissection Video by Kittson SWCD
Soil Stewardship Program
Our forestland is threatened more today than perhaps ever before. Insects of all kinds have infested urban trees in cities, big and small, and consumed large sections of the wilderness in Western states; wildfires burn millions of acres annually, all the while stealing millions of dollars from our federal agencies in their attempt to preserve our forests.
A healthy, sustainable, forest requires the help of trained professionals. It begins with a plan and a commitment to sound management that is beneficial for the wildlife that occupy it and the rest of us who visit once in a while. The forest needs caretakers — stewards — to nurture it and educate the next generation of adventurers on how to best appreciate it.
The forest is calling us. It’s asking for our help.
What it offers in return is well worth the investment. - NACD 2021
Materials are FREE and are made available through the SWCD to all interested churches, restaurants and other interested local groups within Roseau County. For more information and to see the various materials that are available, click HERE.
If you live in another county, please contact your local SWCD for more information.
Every year, we put up educational information in our fairbooth. In 2021 the theme was Water Quality.
Local Water Management
Administer Local Water Management Plan
50% cost-share for well decommissioning up to $500
Well water clinics and analysis
Project Work Team participation
Rainfall monitoring network support
Program and financial reports
Other items may be found in the Comprehensive Local Water Management Plan
1. Erosion & sedimentation of surface waters, stormwater runoff and wetlands.
2. Flood control & flood damage reduction.
3. Surface water protection and improvement
4. Managing existing ditch systems
5. Groundwater protection and quality
One Watershed, One Plan
We also are participating in the new One Watershed, One Plan (1W1P) initative for water planning. With coordinated efforts from SWCDs, Counties, and Watershed Districts, we are aligning local water planning efforts along watershed boundaries for efficient resource management.
2019 - The Roseau SWCD, along with Roseau County, Warroad River Watershed District, Lake of the Woods County and Lake of the Woods SWCD, completed the Lake of the Woods Comprehensive Watershed Management Plan under the 1W1P initiative. For more information, go to the LOW 1W1P website - https://www.low1w1p.org.
2021 - The Two Rivers Plus Comprehensive Watershed Management Plan has also been completed. We are currently working Kittson SWCD, Kittson County, and Roseau County for plan implementation. For more information, go to the Two Rivers Plus website - https://www.tworiversplus1w1p.org/.
One more 1W1P will be completed in the future - the Roseau River 1W1P. An application was submitted June 2021 for plan development.
MN Ag Water Quality Certification Program
Rainfall Monitoring Network
Currently 33 individuals and 3 agencies monitor rainfall April through October
If your township is not represented within Roseau County and you would like to become a monitor, please contact us and and we will provide a rain gauge and recording sheets. Your responsibility would be to mail the data to the Roseau SWCD at month's end or send your results by email
Data is entered into the Climatology database and all reports are mailed to the Climatology Office in St. Paul, MN
Administration of program rules
Checking eligibility requirements
Plan development and technical assistance
Field checking and reviewing
Program and financial reporting
Main practices for Roseau County
grade stabilization structures such as side water inlets / outlets
streambank stabilization (for environmental protection/stabilization, not for aesthetics)
State Cost-Share is available to Roseau County landowners who are looking to plant field windbreaks. Special projects such as critical area stabilization are also covered under this program. A stabilization project is for those areas that are in critical need, not for beautification.
Cost-share is available at 50% for eligible practices. Contracts have a 10 year life span and practices must be maintained. For additional information regarding state cost-share practices and requirements, please contact our office.
Conservation grade trees are sold only during the spring season.
We can take tree orders starting in the fall for the next upcoming season.
We provide technical expertise in designing tree sites and education of proper tree planting and maintenance.
We provide trees for the Arbor Day school program.
Click on Trees Tab on navigator for more information
Wetlands Conservation Act
Administer WCA rules
Wetland delineation or determinations
Site and field reviews
Technical Evaluation Panel (TEP) reviews
Program and financial reports
For any landowner, who is looking at doing any activities that may involve removing trees or moving dirt such as in building roads, field drainage, or land clearing and is not in the USDA Farm Programs, it would be very important to check out the Minnesota Wetland Conservation Act (WCA) at the Roseau SWCD office. For those who are in Farm Programs, please contact the Roseau Natural Resources Conservation Service at 218.463.1862 Ext 3 or the Farms Service Agency at 218-463-2452 Ext 2.
The Wetland Conservation Act was first passed in 1991 and since that time, we have had several changes and amendments to the rules. The basic requirement of the Wetland Conservation Act is that an area of wetland characteristics cannot be drained or filled unless the proposed area is first looked at and reviewed to determine if the area may fit under an exemption listed in the WCA rules. Other possibilities, depending on wetland types and if avoidance or minimization can be met, may be to replace by restoring wetlands, by creating or buying wetland credits from a wetland bank.
Roseau County is a <50% pre-existing wetland county; therefore, wetland replacement is 2:1 replacement value or greater. In a wetland violation, the replacement value is 4:1. Anyone having questions or needing information on the Wetland Conservation Act may stop by our office or contact us by phone 218.463.1903.