DU, KDFWR Receive $75,000 for Ky Conservation

DU, KDFWR Receive $75,000 for Kentucky Conservation
Federal NAWCA Small Grant supports long-term wetland conservation.

Ducks Unlimited
Ducks Unlimited

BALLARD, Ky. – -(AmmoLand.com)- Ducks Unlimited and the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources received a $75,000 North American Wetlands Conservation Act Small Grant to enhance habitat on two state Wildlife Management Areas in Ballard County. The two partners provided nearly $170,000 in matching funds toward the federal grant.

“This project focuses on enhancing emergent wetland habitat for waterfowl and other wetland dependent species,” said Tim Willis, Ducks Unlimited regional biologist. “Through this work we will provide over 100 acres of valuable foraging and resting habitats for wintering and migrating waterfowl, shorebirds and wading birds.”

The sites are located on Ballard WMA and Boatwright WMA, which lie near the confluence of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers and within the Mississippi Alluvial Valley, continentally significant winter habitat for over seven million waterfowl.

“We plan to enhance 100 acres on three impoundments,” Willis said. “The proposed work will enable KDFWR to manage these areas for desired moist soil vegetation. Well-managed moist soil impoundments often produce 6 to 10 times the amount of food of other habitat types, and the foods provided meet all of the nutritional requirements of waterfowl during winter.”

This project is a continuation of a long-standing partnership between DU and the KDFWR, but it is their first collaboration on a NAWCA Small Grant proposal. The groups worked together on the acquisition of the Stallins and Perkins Units which were added to Boatwright WMA in 2003, and are actively collaborating on plans for an estimated 30 wetland restoration and enhancement projects on public and private lands in western Kentucky during the next several years.

“KDFWR is extremely excited about this opportunity to work with Ducks Unlimited, Inc through this NAWCA-funded program to further enhance the most important waterfowl concentration area in the state,” KDFWR Waterfowl Coordinator Rocky Prichert said. “KDFWR is proud of the cooperative working relationship we have with DU. They have been an outstanding partner over the years, and through our combined efforts we have been successful in moving toward the goals of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan.”

The NAWCA Small Grants Program supports public-private partnerships carrying out projects that further the goals of the NAWCA. Project activities are usually smaller in scope and involve fewer project dollars than in the Standard Grants Program. Small grant requests may not exceed $75,000, and funding priority is given to grantees or partners new to the NAWCA grants program.

With more than a million supporters, Ducks Unlimited is the world’s largest and most effective wetland and waterfowl conservation organization having conserved over 12 million acres. The United States alone has lost more than half of its original wetlands – natures’ most productive ecosystem – and continues to lose more than 80,000 wetland acres each year.