Dive into the mission, vision and philanthropy of the long-standing conservation group, Ducks Unlimited.
For the past 87 years, our flyways and waterfowl populations have had an active voice and influential advocate regarding ongoing preservation and conservation practices. Ducks Unlimited (DU), like the majority of conservation groups, was founded on the ideals and goals of a small group of sportsmen.
The Great Depression and simultaneous drought were what initially prompted the groups’ formation. With the preservation of our recreational waterways and the future of the winged inhabitants that frequent them at the forefront, DU has grown to the be the largest waterfowl and wetlands conservation organization in the world.
Ducks Unlimited: Our Mission
Ducks Unlimited conserves, restores, and manages wetlands and associated habitats for North America’s waterfowl. These habitats also benefit other wildlife and people.
Ducks Unlimited: Our Vision
The vision of Ducks Unlimited is wetlands sufficient to fill the skies with waterfowl today, tomorrow and forever.
Last year alone, 2,610 chapters raised $53.9 million through gifts, partnerships and banquet proceeds for U.S. wetlands. Land projects included 209,000 additional acres that added to a cumulative total over 13.3 million acres conserved since the 1937 inception. That is a swath of land nearly equal to the combined footprints of Rhode Island, Delaware, Connecticut, New Jersey, and Massachusetts or seven Yellowstone National Parks.
As their mission also states, waterfowl are not the only beneficiaries of these efforts. Protection of our waterways has far reaching effects throughout many ecosystems.
Basic membership in DU is a paltry $35.00 per year and currently includes the benefit of receiving their print publication and your choice of either a DU duck call or DU fleece jacket. This is a small way to financially support the efforts of this organization.
If you are interested in a more active role, the aforementioned 2,610 chapters nationwide are indicative to the fact that there is a group of like minded folks nearby. These local chapters, like other conservation organizations, are the grassroots groups wherein waterway projects, land preservation efforts, and fundraising banquets take shape and are carried out.
Conservation and preservation efforts alone do not define DU. Their role in ongoing research regarding seasonal breeding grounds, migration patterns and hunter education are pivotal in ensuring the future of waterfowlers nationwide. Online databases for waterfowl identification and links to instructional content for hunters are all part of the DU platform that encourages ethical and respectful hunting practices. These and numerous other resources can be found on the DU website.
From the waterways to the backcountry basins and ridges; next week we’ll look at Backcountry Hunters and Anglers.