MEMPHIS, Tenn. – March 10, 2017 – The New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife was recognized today for its cumulative $500,000 in contributions supporting wetlands protection and restoration on the Canadian Boreal Forest breeding grounds, which are important to New Jersey’s waterfowl populations. The ceremony took place at the 82nd North American Wildlife and Natural Resources Conference in Spokane, Washington.
“New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife has reached an impressive milestone in its commitment to improving habitat important to the birds that migrate through New Jersey each year,” said Paul Schmidt, Ducks Unlimited chief conservation officer. “We are excited to recognize them and are proud of this strong conservation partnership.”
The support helped fund restoration and protection nesting habitat in the Boreal Forests in Canada through the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies' (AFWA) State Contributions to Canada program.
“Being a key migration and wintering area for waterfowl in the heart of the Atlantic Flyway, New Jersey is pleased to continue to partner with Ducks Unlimited and Ducks Unlimited Canada on habitat conservation work in key breeding areas of Canada,” said New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife Director Larry Herrighty.
The AFWA program, which funds North American Waterfowl Management Plan habitat projects in Canada, started in 1965 as one of the first international public/private partnerships to support migratory bird conservation and is funded primarily by hunting license sales. Through this program, states help fund long-term partnerships that conserve and restore breeding habitat for waterfowl that migrate through, and winter in, their own states.
As with all states that contribute to the program through Ducks Unlimited, New Jersey’s contribution will be matched by DU and funds from the North American Wetlands Conservation Act. Habitat conservation efforts focus on habitats important to waterfowl migrating through New Jersey and the Atlantic Flyway each spring and fall.
“New Jersey has reached the Silver Award level, and their commitment to wetland conservation continues to build,” Schmidt added.
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Ducks Unlimited Inc. is the world's largest nonprofit organization dedicated to conserving North America's continually disappearing waterfowl habitats. Established in 1937, Ducks Unlimited has conserved more than 13.8 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.