Ducks Unlimited (DU) will receive $179,046 from the Nebraska Environmental Trust
(NET) for the Restoring Western Alkali and Riparian Wetlands proposal.
The NET board announced the award at its meeting on April 8, in Lincoln. This is the first year of funding for the Restoring Western Alkali and Riparian Wetlands proposal with the potential for a second year of funding of $40,000. This grant proposal is one of 113 receiving more than $18 million in funds from the NET this year. Of the applicants, 42 were new and 71 were carryover projects.
"Funding from the Nebraska Environmental Trust and matching partner funds are essential to completing restoration projects like those in the Restoring Western Alkali and Riparian Wetlands proposal," said Tom Peterson, DU regional biologist in Nebraska. "We can maximize our efforts and reach collective conservation goals with strong partnerships and diverse funding that benefit the people and wildlife of western Nebraska."
The Restoring Western Alkali and Riparian Wetlands proposal details plans to restore more than 1,000 acres of wetland and grassland habitats in the North Platte River Biologically Unique Landscape (BUL). The proposal targets two publicly owned wetlands in western Nebraska – the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission’s (NGPC) Kiowa Wildlife Management Area (WMA) and the Chet and Jane Fleisbach WMA. Work on privately owned wetlands in Scotts Bluff County along the North Platte River is also included in the plan.
Restoration work defined in the proposal includes sediment removal and construction of water management infrastructure on degraded backwater sloughs. Crews will rebuild banks and water-control structures to restore and enhance shallow water wetlands. Grazing lands will be improved by installing grazing infrastructure and removing invasive Russian olive vegetation to improve forage production.
This conservation project follows the best science available and recommended strategies in the strategic plans for NGPC, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Playa Lakes Joint Venture and Ducks Unlimited.
About Nebraska Environmental Trust
The Nebraska Legislature created the Nebraska Environmental Trust in 1992. Using revenue from the Nebraska Lottery, the Trust has provided over $349 million in grants to over 2,400 projects across the state. Anyone – citizens, organizations, communities, farmers and businesses – can apply for funding to protect habitat, improve water quality and establish recycling programs in Nebraska. The Nebraska Environmental Trust works to preserve, protect and restore our natural resources for future generations.
About Ducks Unlimited
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 15 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.
Jennifer P. Kross