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Partnership Restores Wetlands in Octoraro Watershed

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


Contact:
Scott Reinhart,
Biologist, Ducks Unlimited
570-727-2537 or sreinhart@ducks.org

or

Kelli Alfano,
Public Affairs Coordinator
kalfano@ducks.org

Partnership Restores Wetlands in Octoraro Watershed
Ducks Unlimited and Partners Happy with Results!

Lancaster, PAFebruary 14, 2006 - Thanks to Ducks Unlimited and its partners, Octoraro Watershed Association (OWA), and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, 28 acres of wetlands were restored and 2.08 miles of stream bank fencing were installed.

According to Scott Reinhart, biologist for Ducks Unlimited, “Octoraro Lake is an important area for waterfowl and other wetland wildlife in Pennsylvania. Extensive tracts of agricultural lands and meandering streams filled with aquatic vegetation attract a multitude of wetland birds including several waterfowl species. Some species included are American black duck, Atlantic population of Canada geese and the ever popular mallard.” However, over the past several years the lake’s aquatic vegetation, water quality and wildlife have declined as a result of non point source pollution, which stems from excessive sediment and nutrient inputs from the surrounding watershed. Reinhart adds, “We hope to get the Lake back to, or at least close to, its original water quality condition; bringing back the aquatic vegetation will bring back the migratory birds and the overall health of this ecosystem.”

Ducks Unlimited biologists in cooperation with OWA and the conservation districts developed the project plans to restore the watershed, which included installing stream bank fencing and planting native forested and grassed buffers along tributaries that show signs of erosion due to overgrazing and poor agricultural practices. Funding for this project was provided by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation; through the Chesapeake Bay legacy grant and Ducks Unlimited, Inc.

With more than one million supporters, Ducks Unlimited is the world’s largest wetland and waterfowl conservation organization. Since it’s founding in 1937, DU has raised more than $1.5 billion and conserved nearly 11 million acres of critical wildlife habitat across North America. Wetlands are nature’s most productive ecosystems, but the United States has lost more than half of its original wetlands and continues to lose more than 80,000 wetland acres every year.

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