Indiana Projects

Click one of the stars on the map below to read more about the state's featured projects. Or click the names of the color-coded Priority Areas in the key to learn more about GLARO's conservation focus. The blue dots represent one or more conservation projects on which DU has worked. Project information comes from annual state Conservation Reports, available in our Resource Library.

Indiana by the Numbers (as of 01/01/2010)

  • Total acres conserved: 22,309
  • Technical assistance acres: 50,917
  • Amount spent on projects: $10,288,926

You can find additional statistics on Indiana's state fact sheet.

Indiana projects map Illinois River Southeast Lake Michigan Lake Erie Ohio Rivers Ohio/Mississippi Confluence Goose Pond FWA Lexington Coal LLC Acquisition/Quiggens Tract Northeast Indiana Pothole Initiative

Meet Indiana's Biologist

Michael Sertle: Regional Biologist, INAs Ducks Unlimited grows and evolves, we look for ways to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of our habitat conservation programs. To this end, in May 2007, Michael Sertle was hired to assume responsibility for DU's conservation programs in Indiana and southwest Michigan. Michael previously worked for the U.S. Geological Survey in North Dakota, where he conducted waterfowl and endangered species research. Michael holds a bachelor's degree in Zoology from Western Illinois University, and a master's degree in Wildlife Management from Southern Illinois University Carbondale. He is an avid waterfowl and deer hunter, and enjoys fishing and playing rugby.

Michael Sertle
Great Lakes/Atlantic Regional Office
1220 Eisenhower Place
Ann Arbor, MI 48108

Northeast Indiana Pothole Initiative conserves vital waterfowl breeding habitat

Since its inception in 2000, the Northeast Indiana Pothole Initiative has focused on the restoration of small wetlands and adjacent native grasses on private lands in eight northeast Indiana counties to promote waterfowl production. Initiated by DU, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (IDNR), this partnership has been successfully restoring critical mallard and blue-winged teal nesting habitat in Allen, DeKalb, Elkhart, Kosciusko, LaGrange, Noble, Steuben and Whitley counties. This region in northeast Indiana very much resembles the "Duck Factory" of the Prairie Pothole Region, as it is dotted with countless small wetlands that are surrounded by large expanses of native grasses. These habitats combine to offer high-quality nesting and brooding habitat for waterfowl and other wildlife. Much of this habitat has been cleared and drained to facilitate agriculture and other developments, but it remains available for fairly easy and inexpensive restoration. Through this successful program, DU and its conservation partners, which include Pheasants Forever (PF), have restored 203 acres of wetlands and established 918 acres of native grassland nesting habitat.

A key accomplishment in 2007 was the successful closeout of a $50,000 grant from the North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA), awarded to DU in 2005 to continue implementing this important program. DU accepted and administered this federal grant on behalf of its partners, the USFWS and IDNR. In December 2007, DU submitted a $75,000 Phase II NAWCA proposal to help fund this program over the next two years. The Phase II effort includes matching funds provided by DU, USFWS, IDNR and PF. Additionally, Monsanto Company, through the CropLife America Program, donated 200 gallons of Roundup® Pro herbicide for native prairie restoration in this region. The value of this herbicide also has been used to leverage NAWCA funds. DU expects to know in March 2008 if the current NAWCA proposal will be funded.

The landscape of northeast Indiana is highly conducive to the restoration and establishment of quality waterfowl habitat and, through funding sources such as NAWCA and private donations, DU and its partners will continue to work toward the conservation of additional wetland and grassland acres.

Northeast Indiana Pothole Initiative
An emergent wetland and adjacent warm season grassland restored in Indiana through the Northeast Indiana Pothole Initiative

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Goose Pond FWA

As the restoration of nearly 8,000 acres of the Goose Pond Fish and Wildlife Area (FWA) nears completion via the Wetlands Reserve Program, Ducks Unlimited, in partnership with the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF), the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) and Duke Energy is working to enhance an additional 58 acres of emergent wetlands.

Ducks Unlimited biological and engineering staff are working closely with the IDNR to install a new water control structure and other management infrastructure that will improve the IDNR's ability to manage water levels and wetland vegetation in two moist soil management units totaling 58 acres at Goose Pond FWA. These wetlands are located next to large expanses of warm season grasslands and other restored wetlands, and they will add significant benefit to the complex of waterfowl habitat at Goose Pond. The IDNR already has reported good waterfowl use and hunter success in this area, and the completion of this project will help increase those numbers even further.

Goose Pond FWA
A new water control structure will be installed at this site to provide better water level management capability for the wetland complex at Goose Pond Fish and Wildlife Area.

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Quiggens, Lexington Coal Company acquisitions protect bottomland hardwoods at Patoka River NWR

Ducks Unlimited helped the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) purchase two properties for inclusion in the Patoka River National Wildlife Refuge (NWR). The 4-acre Quiggens property contains quality bottomland hardwood wetland located in the floodplain of the Patoka River. Acquisition of this property filled an important gap in the connectivity of protected lands at the NWR, which protects habitat for nesting wood ducks, spring-migrating waterfowl and the federally endangered Indiana bat. DU's contribution to this acquisition was provided through a generous bequest from the William A. Walker Estate.

Quiggens Tracts
The 4-acre Quiggens Tract, a forested wetland located in the Patoka River NWR.

DU also partnered with the USFWS to purchase 357 acres of bottomland hardwood and scrub/shrub wetlands spanning five separate tracts, collectively known as the Lexington Coal Company LLC property. This acquisition helps protect the floodplain of the Patoka River while providing quality habitat for wintering and migrating waterfowl and myriad other wildlife. The purchase of the Lexington Coal Company property was made possible by a bequest to DU from the William A. Walker Estate, the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund and the Southwest Indiana Habitat Expansion North American Wetlands Conservation Act grant. The addition of these properties to the NWR will protect quality waterfowl habitat in southern Indiana, strengthen DU's conservation partnerships in the region and provide more than 360 acres of additional land open to public recreation.

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