Who’s Going To Look After the Ducks?

March 29, 2009 by  

A Day in the Field With Delta Waterfowl – By Jed Fluhrer

Who’s going to look after the ducks? While I have spent many days in the marsh and field scanning the skies for ducks, it wasn’t until I stood in a wetland east of Bismarck, North Dakota surrounded by a group of Cub Scouts and Delta Waterfowl volunteers that I fully understood the magnitude of that question. Maybe it was the setting, maybe it was the the cub scouts with their muddy hands, pants and faces but it finally made sense to me why they were so important to the future of ducks and duck hunting.

As many of you are aware, the demographic of waterfowlers is changing. The majority of waterfowlers in the US and Canada are over 40 years old. The number of youth introduced to waterfowling each year is unfortunately very low. Luckily, a small but growing group, Delta Waterfowl, has put youth recruitment high on their list of priorities.

Delta Waterfowl has been around since 1938 but remained relatively unknown except in the scientific community. Delta’s focus has always been research and the training of scientists but in recent years the group has increased its work in public education and involvement. Through its local chapters Delta has recruited and organized conservation minded waterfowlers who help raise money for local projects and funding for graduate students at its research facility located at the Delta Marsh, on the south shore of Lake Manitoba in south central Manitoba.

This day out on the marsh east of Bismarck was a prime example of the work a local Delta chapter is doing to introduce youth to the outdoors and waterfowling. On this day, Delta volunteers along with a local Cub Scout Pack 117 Den 2 installed ten hen houses and twenty wood duck boxes. The wood duck boxes were constructed by the Cub Scout and help with placement was coordinated through the local Delta Chapter and the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

As a reward for helping with the project the youth were given duck calls and hats along with earning Cub Scout achievements in conservation and woodworking. Volunteers were rewarded with the knowledge that they had helped plant a seed in the minds of these youth and helped the future of waterfowl and waterfowl hunting.
If you enjoy duck hunting, its your job to look after the ducks and do your part to secure the future of waterfowl and waterfowl hunting. Get involved in a conservation organization. I promise it will be the most rewarding work you ever undertake.

If you are interested in forming a Delta chapter or being involved with Delta Waterfowl. Log on to www.deltawaterfowl.org or call 1-888-987-3695. If you live in North Dakota, South Dakota or Minnesota please contact Regional Event Director Scott Terning (also known as “deltaboy”¬†here on Nodak Outdoors) [email protected].


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