ARLINGTON, Va. – April 4, 2013 – Ducks Unlimited's Great Lakes and Atlantic Region (GLAR) was recognized last week with the National Blue-winged Teal Award during the 78th North American Wildlife and Natural Resources Conference in Arlington, Va. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) presented GLAR with the award for DU's work benefiting waterfowl and other wetland birds.
"This award is so meaningful because it was our conservation partners in the states who nominated us," said GLAR Director Becky Humphries. "Ducks Unlimited's work is always done with support from our partners, and it's really important to be recognized for the effective relationships we have fostered. That's how we get meaningful on-the-ground work done."
The National Blue-winged Teal Award recognizes USFWS partners whose activities at the national, regional or local level result in substantial benefits to waterfowl, other wetland-associated migratory bird populations or wetlands habitats, as a onetime, periodic or ongoing effort. Those efforts are evaluated using the North American Waterfowl Management Plan (NAWMP).
Ducks Unlimited's GLAR office was established in Ann Arbor, Mich., in 1998 to meet expanding demand for research and project delivery in the region. "It started as just a few people trying to get a handle on the area and its impact on migrating, wintering and nesting waterfowl," said John Coluccy, Ph.D., GLAR director of conservation planning. "Our research is contributing directly to landscape decisions that will affect wetland health and waterfowl abundance in areas far from here, thanks to our migrating test subjects."
Going hand-in-hand with these important science-based efforts, Ducks Unlimited volunteers are a critical part of the conservation equation, and the GLAR holds a significant portion of the organization's cohort.
"The fact is, our members got us here," said Todd Bishop, DU managing director of development. "Without the men and women who contribute their time, treasure and talents to the cause of filling the skies with waterfowl today, tomorrow and forever, we couldn't do the research or manage the projects that we do. Nearly half of DU's members live in the Great Lakes and Atlantic Region; that concentration of enthusiasm inspires the staff and supports the organization across the continent."
The GLAR was nominated for the National Blue-winged Teal Award by the Department of Natural Resources in Wisconsin and Michigan. The nomination was reviewed by the USFWS NAWMP awards committee and plan committee members. NAWMP is implemented through long-term partnerships of government agencies, nongovernmental organizations and individuals committed to the conservation of North American waterfowl, other wetland-associated migratory bird populations and their wetlands habitats. NAWMP's success is directly related to the contributions of these dedicated partners, some of which have spanned a decade or more, while others have contributed to NAWMP's success through short-term actions.
Ducks Unlimited Inc. is the world's largest non-profit organization dedicated to conserving North America's continually disappearing waterfowl habitats. Established in 1937, Ducks Unlimited has conserved more than 13 million acres thanks to contributions from more than a million supporters across the continent. Guided by science and dedicated to program efficiency, DU works toward the vision of wetlands sufficient to fill the skies with waterfowl today, tomorrow and forever. For more information on our work, visit www.ducks.org. Connect with us on our Facebook page at facebook.com/DucksUnlimited, follow our tweets at twitter.com/DucksUnlimited and watch DU videos at youtube.com/DucksUnlimitedInc.