The Hajny property is a 33-acre addition to the Smith Waterfowl Production Area (WPA) in Clay County. Once restored, the property will provide additional waterfowl habitat and significantly reduce the amount of soil washing into the 500-acred Smith WPA from surrounding farmland, greatly improving the ability to manage this important migration habitat for waterfowl.
Ducks Unlimited (DU) acquired the property on June 5 with funding from a North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA) grant. DU will transfer the property to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to be managed as part of the Smith WPA.
DU also acquired the 160-acre Himmelberg tract in Nuckolls County, whichis adjacent to the Smartweed Marsh Wildlife Management Area. This property contains a portion of a large wetland that extends onto the adjacent Smartweed Marsh. The acquisition of this property will now protect the entire wetland footprint and allow the wetland to be managed more effectively. The portion of this property that contains critical wetland habitat, and adjacent buffer lands, will be transferred to the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission to be managed as part of Smartweed Marsh. The balance of this property is farmland and will be sold with the proceeds of the sale used to acquire additional, critical wetland habitat in the Rainwater Basin. This project was also funded through a NAWCA grant.