Monday, September 18, 2023

South Dakota Projects Receive Nearly $1.45 Million

Help is on the way to enhance more wildlife habitat, create more public access for elk hunters, better advance chronic wasting disease research and support more South Dakota hunting and outdoor programs.

The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and its partners allocated $1,458,840 in grant funding to further those endeavors. RMEF committed $295,123 that helped leverage $1,163,717 in partner dollars.

The grant funding supports 25 projects across 16 counties and two others with statewide impact.

“A significant portion of these grants focus on invasive weed control, removing encroaching conifers on aspen stands, creating new wildlife water sources and better protecting riparian habitat. These treatments make a significant difference for elk, deer and other species,” said Blake Henning, RMEF chief conservation officer.

Highlighting a few examples, RMEF granted funding in addition to the previously announced $100,000 for chronic wasting disease research in the Black Hills and $15,000 to open public access for elk hunting on private land. In addition, RMEF allotted funding for 15 hunting heritage projects ranging from youth recreational shooting teams to helping expand The Outdoor Campus facility in Sioux Falls.

South Dakota is home to more than 4,500 RMEF members and 17 chapters.

“We salute and recognize our volunteers for their efforts to generate this funding that goes back on the ground in their home state,” said Kyle Weaver, RMEF president and CEO.

Since 1990, RMEF and its partners completed 430 conservation and hunting heritage outreach projects in South Dakota with a combined value of more than $53.9 million. These projects conserved or enhanced 128,659 acres of habitat and opened or improved public access to 11,711 acres.

Click here to see a full list of the projects.

Discover why “Hunting Is Conservation™” at or 800-CALL ELK.