Without the Nebraska Environmental Trust (NET), Ducks Unlimited would have completed a mere fraction of the 312 projects on more than 107,000 acres it has protected, restored or enhanced in Nebraska.
"NET funding was part of more than 90 percent of Nebraska DU projects," said John Denton, DU manager of conservation for Nebraska. "We encourage Nebraskans to support this vitally important conservation partner."
In the last year alone, NET has awarded Ducks Unlimited and partners grants for seven restoration projects on crucial migration habitats. The almost $746,000 in grants were matched with federal sources to at least double the available funds for restoration work along the Lower Platte River, North Platte River, Loup Rivers, Sandhills and Rainwater Basin. These restorations were completed on perpetually protected properties.
In partnership with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Ducks Unlimited will restore 890 acres of Asian carp-infested wetlands at the Valentine National Wildlife Refuge. Carp wreak havoc on wetland vegetation, leaving no forage available for migratory birds. With this grant, carp will be removed and new water control structures will keep carp out.
The Loup River Public Wetland project is a partnership with Nebraska Game and Parks Commission to restore and enhance degraded wetlands on eight wildlife management areas along the Loup River. The wetlands are choked with cattails. DU will clean inactive river channels of sediment and invasive plant species and install water control structures.
DU will also restore wetlands in remnant channels along the North Platte River in Scotts Bluff County and the Lower Platte River in Dodge County. The private landowner on the North Platte River tract is donating easement value to provide match for the NET grant. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is also assisting.
The restoration projects in the Rainwater Basin will be completed on two DU revolving tracts. NET was pivotal in the initiation of DU’s Revolving Habitat Program in Nebraska. The program has permanently protected over 10,000 acres in Nebraska.