The information above came from the Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division's booklet Sportfish Management in Alabama Ponds, which is available as a PDF.
USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Assistance
1) If a land owner wants to build a pond where its primary function is for livestock/irrigation, Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has a cost share program. The land owner can apply for the program, and an NRCS agent will come on site to help with the site selection/design, etc. The agent must to do this to ensure the land owner conforms to the guidelines of the program.
2) If a land owner wants to build a recreational pond, then the NRCS agent will come out “as time and resources permit” to help with site selection/design, etc. However, the land owner must conform to federal permitting guidelines, such as the Corps of Engineers permit and the Sediment and Erosion permit for their assistance. Applications for these permits must be sent in by land owner to see if they need them, but the agent can usually tell the land owner if one will be required while on site. This same scenario holds for existing recreational ponds with structural problems.
3) Land owner can come to a field office to discuss site selection/design, etc.
4) Land owner can discuss with the NRCS agent on phone.