DU believes that it is important for today's children to understand the value of wetlands and the many species of wildlife that depend upon them. For this reason, in 1973 DU started the DU youth program. It is called Greenwings after the Green-winged teal, the smallest of our waterfowl. The Greenwing program is for members 17 years old and younger. Today's youth will be tomorrow's leaders. Through education, we hope to make tomorrows leaders advocates for wetland conservation.
A contribution of $10 makes you a Greenwing member of Ducks Unlimited.
As a DU Greenwing member, you can be proud to know that you are one of more than 60,000 young people who love the outdoors and care about protecting wetlands across North America.
A Greenwing membership is for children age 17 or younger and entitles the recipient to:
- A DU membership card and certificate
- Greenwing decals (age 11 and younger)
- Two unique DU decals (one duck head and one DU shield for ages 12-17 years)
- Four issues of the Puddler online magazine (ages 11 and younger)
- Six issues of Ducks Unlimited Magazine (ages 12-17 years)
- For younger Greenwings, there's a special Web site, www.greenwing.org. Older Greenwings can access the Members Only section of the Ducks Unlimited Web site, www.ducks.org.
Interested in making a lasting impact?
Read more about the Legacy Greenwing program.
Greenwings are the Future
Recruiting the next generation is critical to the future of the resource and our hunting heritage. Perhaps the single most important contribution any of us can make to ensure the future of waterfowl and waterfowling is to bring a young person into the duck blind and teach him or her the skills, ethics, and respect for wildlife our parents or others instilled in us.
First hunts are import and should be started early in a child's life. Pick a good day for the first hunt - one that will keep the child's interest. Explain almost everything you and your partner do - why you use a duck call, why you wear and use camouflage, why you set out decoys, why hunters harvest some birds each fall, the reason for a license and where the license dollars go, the fact that their support of DU conservation efforts enable wise management of waterfowl populations. Also, be patient, keep the hunts short, and stress safety and conservation. After the hunt, help the child clean a bird and explain the different parts. Most importantly, teach by example and continue the hunter and conservation education.
Following are some things you can do to keep a childs interest:
- Take the child to a refuge where he/she can see large numbers of waterfowl
- Buy an easy to use duck call
- Encourage reading and identification of waterfowl
- Pass on stories and encourage him or her to tell stories.
As teachers of young waterfowlers, the payoff of igniting a young person's interest in the outdoors can be the greatest source of pride. You will feel the pride in seeing your outdoor skills and ethics passed down to another generation.
What will happen if we stop the circle of teaching young people the right way to treat and save wildlife? Today's GREENWINGS are the FUTURE of waterfowling and conservation. It's up to us to keep the flame growing in their hearts and minds.