In partnership with the Nebraska Environmental Trust and the North American Wetlands Conservation Council, Ducks Unlimited has secured a perpetual conservation easement on the Double Dog Ranch on the South Platte River between Paxton and Sutherland, Nebraska. This easement will protect almost two miles of the Platte River, providing vital migration and wintering habitat for waterfowl. This area is particularly important during spring migration, when waterfowl need adequate foraging and resting habitat to replenish energy reserves. Research has shown that migration habitat has a direct link to the reproductive success of waterfowl in the Prairie Pothole Region.
The Platte River has experienced dramatic habitat loss over the years, largely as a result of the construction of dams in its upper watershed that hold back floodwaters, preventing the river from recharging adjacent wet meadows and wetlands. The Double Dog Ranch conservation easement and habitat enhancement projects will help ensure that waterfowl will always find adequate habitat along the river to meet their needs.