Chickadee Tax Check-off
Since we are right in the middle of income tax time, I thought it appropriate to remind taxpayers about the opportunity we all have to help our wildlife in Iowa, especially nongame species. Enacted in 1981, the Chickadee Tax Check-off source helped establish the nongame wildlife program in Iowa, which is called the Wildlife Diversity Program.
The check-off gives Iowans an opportunity to voluntarily donate a self-designated portion of their Iowa tax refund when completing their Iowa form 1040s. If tax payments are still due the state, filers may even add a donation amount to their outstanding tax bill, if they so choose.
To locate the check-off area, look for "Fish/Wildlife" fund on a line near the end of the tax form. Even though tax form terminology has changed, contributions made on this line still are credited to the special WDP account and are used to further conservation of nongame wildlife.
Programs supported by this fund include the following:
- Restoration of previously lost Iowa Wildlife such as: Peregrine Falcons, Ospreys, Trumpeter Swans, and Prairie Chickens
- Educational Wildlife Appreciation events held all over the state such as: Bald Eagle Watch Days, Pelican Fest, Prairie Chicken Day
- Designation of Bird Conservation Areas in key areas around the state supporting increased habitat for all types of birds
- Multiple research projects on Birds, Butterflies, Bobcats, Fish, Amphibian and Reptiles.
- Population monitoring of species status and populations through research projects and volunteer surveys such as: Multi-Species Inventory and Monitoring, Breeding Bird Atlas, Breeding Bird Survey, Bald Eagle Midwinter Survey, Frog and Toad Call Survey, Raptor Nest and Colonial Waterbird Colony monitoring
- Acquisition of important lands for public use in wildlife watching, hunting, hiking, and fishing
- Technical Guidance provided on land management for wildlife species.
- Full-time staff members in the Wildlife Diversity Program dedicated to Iowa's Wildlife.
Something to think about. Even a dollar multiplied by thousands of Iowans can make a huge difference in supporting wildlife conservation in Iowa.