I think you are spot on with the ag practices (habitat or lack of it) followed closely by the weather. It will take the government involvement to set-aside large tracts for ground, too much for DU/PF to do.
I am not sure which is worse for the habitat, high or low grain prices. When they are low you can see why a farmer struggles to give-up a row or 2 here and there to try to maximize production and hopefully stay in business another year. But it was the years of $7 corn that seemed to take out most of the unused building sites and old groves, titled waterways and pulled out fences to get "one more row" in the field...or maybe they then had the funds to clear that acres for production and the potential possible added revenue was more likely to able help off-set the cost of clearing them. If the landowner/farmer isn't a sportman or concerned about wildlife/habitat, the wildlife overall will struggle. I hate to ask for the government to help, but CRP programs are one of the best quick habitat builders ever. In KS, it seems they need to have an incentive to protect the prairies and grasslands...need Uncle's help.
Well if anything came out of this exchange I figured what the hell and called the closest large Urban chapter close to me - explained what I'm passionate about and they explained what they do which may align with what I'd like to try to accomplish - #1 - squeak very loudly to corporate PF so they change their direction and affect policies in states they can and throw their weight around with law makers, #2 affect policy in our state with someone behind you. Based on the ages that I last saw of the corporate directors of PF I'd highly doubt any changes would happen but who knows.
I had a sit down booked with our KDWPT secretary but it all got canceled when Covid went rampant in March. I just need some help in fine tuning the economic argument - other than that I'd still expect the political head shake and ignoring you unless you got the media behind you to call out the policy makers asinine decisions.