Help preserve Central Alberta’s habitat: Be a Ducks Unlimited Marshkeeper!

Volunteers, sponsors vital to growing program

Ducks Unlimited Marshkeepers volunteers enjoy a field tour in the Camrose area. Marshkeepers is a hands-on program that lets volunteers participate in projects that make a difference to the region’s habitat.

If you’d like to make a real impact in the conservation of Central Alberta’s wildlife habitat, Ducks Unlimited Canada has the program for you: Marshkeepers!

The hands-on, boots-on-the-ground program lets volunteers get busy on projects that make a visible difference to the region’s habitat. From participating in bird counts or conducting simple site inspections to education activities or monitoring fences, the province-wide program has enjoyed a groundswell of volunteer support – growing from about 60 in the first year to about 240 today, notes program co-ordinator Lee Ann Singleton.

Participants also appreciate the opportunity to manage their volunteer time and contributions.

“Our Marshkeepers really enjoy the flexibility of the program,” Singleton says.

However, with an operating budget of $125,000, Marshkeepers – like Ducks Unlimited’s many vital initiatives – also relies on financial support, especially from corporate donors who value the opportunity to give back in a meaningful way to the communities they work in, Singleton says.

Ducks Unlimited’s corporate supporters can even contribute to both sides of the program – supporting employees in team-building volunteer efforts and contributing financially to ensure the vital work maintain Central Alberta’s wetlands remain healthy.

With more than 2,000 projects covering 2.3 million acres, Alberta is home to DUC’s largest concentration of habitat projects, ranging from urban wetland interpretive sites to large-scale water controls. By collaborating with industry, government, landowners and volunteers, the organization is bringing many of Alberta’s natural areas in back to life.

By the Numbers in Red Deer County:

  • Dollars invested in DUC habitat projects since 1944: $10,021,868
  • Habitat projects: 152
  • Conservation land acres: 15,297
  • Restored and managed wetland acres: 3,157
  • Forage program acres in 2018: 1,500
  • Supporters: 537

Mark your calendars!

DUC Boot Camp: Coming up in Red Deer Sunday, May 26 is the DUC Boot Camp, an on-the-ground learning experience for DUC volunteers. This fun-filled one-day event includes a morning of classroom learning and an afternoon of hands-on activities.

Annual day of field tours in Alberta include a northern field tour in the Edmonton/Tofield area Saturday, June 15 and a southern field tour in the Calgary/Brooks area Sunday, June 23.

To learn more, contact Lee Ann Singleton at l_singleton@ducks.ca.

***

Since 1938, Ducks Unlimited Canada has worked with landowners, government, industry and other organizations to conserve Alberta wetlands. Here in the County of Red Deer, whether they’re working with farmers to find balance between land productivity and conservation, or watershed, municipal and community groups, the goal is to work together to ensure the environment can support the interests and activities of everyone. Stay up to date with all the Ducks Unlimited’s Alberta happenings on Facebook or learn more online at ducks.ca.

 

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