Open house on changes from flood irrigated to sprinkler

Jackson Soil and Water Conservation District (JSWCD) is holding a May 26 open house to review a large project converting flood to sprinkler irrigation.  The District recently finished the last phase of the project on Little Butte Creek, converting 125 acres of previously flood-irrigated lands to a sprinkler system. The project is expected to improve water quality and conserve water   
The three-year project was a cooperative effort between JSWCD, Little Butte Creek Watershed Council, Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, Oregon Fish and Wildlife Heritage Foundation and the Medford Water Commission.

The public is invited to attend, and it is requested that interested persons contact JWCD at 541 776-4270, ext. 3, for reservations, information and directions to the May 26 event.

Flood irrigation is the most common method of irrigation in Jackson County, particularly on hay and pasture ground. While it has its advantages, there are drawbacks. Excess run-off can carry sedimentation, bacteria, and nutrients to the stream as well as increasing water temperatures, all of which can be detrimental to fish and wildlife and the overall health of the stream.

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