RIVERTON, Iowa, Nov. 2, 2006 – Several Riverton private duck clubs helped pay for a new water control pump recently installed on the Jensen tract in the Riverton Wildlife Management Area. The newly developed 700-acre tract is open to hunting.
The Sundown, Hamburg, C and C, Pelican Hole and Walden Farm duck clubs donated the funds in the name of Bob “Shooter” Allen, a long time conservationist and well-known shooting expert from Iowa.Sundown Club member Bill Van Orsdel of West Des Moines spearheaded the fund-raising effort.
“Duck club members at Riverton are all concerned sportsmen who cherish the waterfowl tradition of the Riverton area,” Van Orsdel said. “They were happy to contribute in the name of Bob Allen to provide additional waterfowl habitat as part on the public wildlife area.”
Private money from the duck clubs provided a significant portion of the funds necessary to restore the Jensen tract.Other conservation partners for the project included the Natural Resources Conservation Service, the Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and DU.
DU recently placed a plaque commemorating the duck clubs’ contribution at the Jensen tract. DU Manager for Iowa Conservation Programs Roger Pederson says the success of DU’s habitat programs is directly related to volunteers such as Bill Van Orsdel, Austin Rice, Jr. and the members of the Riverton duck clubs.
“Duck clubs manage vitally important seasonal marshes, and the combination of public and private land provides a critical habitat complex for a host of wildlife species,” Pederson said.
Waterfowl using the area include pintails, mallards, wood ducks, green-winged teal, blue-winged teal, widgeon, gadwall and Canada geese. Other wildlife found on the site include birds of prey, shorebirds, songbirds, wading birds, white-tailed deer, turkey, ring-necked pheasant and furbearers such as otters, mink and muskrats.
With more than a million supporters, Ducks Unlimited is the world’s largest and most effective wetland and waterfowl conservation organization. The United States alone has lost more than half of its original wetlands - nature’s most productive ecosystem - and continues to lose more than 80,000 wetland acres each year.