South Dakota is one of the most important duck production areas in North America. Although it is considered a Central Flyway state, South Dakota produces ducks that migrate continent-wide. The portion of South Dakota west of the Missouri River is considered "unglaciated," so the relatively few wetlands in this area consist mostly of impoundments used to water livestock. Nonetheless, duck recruitment in this landscape is high. The glaciated, eastern part of the state contains some of the highest wetland densities and breeding duck populations in the Prairie Pothole Region.
DU has conserved 665,722 acres of waterfowl habitat in South Dakota, and as part of the Preserve Our Prairies Initiative, is now focused on securing critical breeding wetlands and grasslands through easements and acquisitions.
View the 2019 South Dakota state conservation report.