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Building the Future Of Waterfowl Together

Building the Future Of Waterfowl Together

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Building the Future Of Waterfowl Together

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  1. Building the Future Of Waterfowl Together

  2. What Is It? • The Michigan Waterfowl Legacy (MWL) is a cooperative partnership to restore, conserve, and celebrate Michigan’s waterfowl, wetlands, and waterfowl hunting community • MWL is a “Call to Action” to: • Honor Yesterday • Engage Today • Build for Tomorrow • MWL is for waterfowlers, other hunters, and the general public

  3. Steering Committee • Citizens Waterfowl Advisory Committee • Ducks Unlimited • Michigan Association of Conservation Districts • Michigan Audubon Society • Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development • Michigan Department of Environmental Quality • Michigan Department of Natural Resources • Michigan Duck Hunters Association • Michigan NAWMP Steering Committee • Michigan United Conservation Clubs • The Conservation Fund • The Nature Conservancy • Pheasants Forever • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service • Waterfowl USA

  4. What Is It? • Three Focus Areas: • Improve Waterfowl Populations and Wetland Habitat • Understand and increase Waterfowl Hunting Heritage • Engage the public, hunters and non-hunters, to take positive action • Public participation in actions to improve habitat and increase waterfowl numbers • Policy changes to build a stronger legacy

  5. Improve Waterfowl Populations and Wetland Habitat Focus Area 1 • Goal 1: Manage abundant and resilient waterfowl populations to support Michigan’s waterfowl hunting heritage and other uses. • Goal 2: Create and manage wetlands and related habitats to sufficiently sustain waterfowl populations at desired levels, while providing ecological services and places to recreate that benefit society.

  6. Understand and Increase Waterfowl Hunting Heritage Focus Area 2 • Goal 1: Increase the number of waterfowl hunters in Michigan • Retain existing hunters • Reconnect with former hunters who have stopped waterfowling • Recruit new waterfowl hunters • Goal 2: Promote the conservation value waterfowl hunting adds to protecting and maintaining wildlife and habitat enjoyed by a broad range recreational users

  7. Engage the Public in Michigan’s Waterfowl Legacy Focus Area 3 • Goal 1: Develop and implement a marketing plan that addresses and highlights the importance of wetlands, waterfowl, waterfowl hunting, and conservation partnerships, and promotes a “call to action” • Goal 2: Establish stable long-term funding source(s) to adequately conserve and manage Michigan’s wetlands and waterfowl populations

  8. Regional Emphasis • Michigan has been divided into five regions so specific programs can be designed individually: • Upper Peninsula • Northern Lower Peninsula • Saginaw Bay Watershed • Lake Erie and Lake St. Clair Watersheds • Southwest Michigan • Anchor Points are areas within regions that have been identified as priority wetland and waterfowl areas

  9. 2012-2013 is the Year of the Duck! • September 8, 2012 to August 2013 • Follows annual life-cycle of waterfowl • Kick off events in September 2012 • Saginaw Bay region implementation • Celebrating Spring Migration • Events • Educational packets with lesson plans • Articles, press releases • MWL will continue over the next ten years

  10. Year of the Duck Coincides With: • 75th anniversaries of: • Ducks Unlimited • Michigan United Conservation Clubs • Pittman-Robertson Act • 65th anniversary of: • Pointe Mouillee Waterfowl Festival • 60th anniversary of: • Mississippi Flyway Council • 40th anniversary of: • Clean Water Act • 25th anniversaries of: • North American Waterfowl Management Plan • Joint Ventures • USFWS Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program

  11. Honoring Yesterday Populations and Habitat • Michigan once had 11 million acres of wetlands, more than 50% gone today • Michigan provides breeding, migration, and wintering habitat for a diversity of waterfowl • Michigan uniquely has dabbling, diving, and sea ducks; and Canada geese • Canada geese, wood ducks, and trumpeter swans are all management successes

  12. Honoring Yesterday Waterfowl hunting heritage is strong in Michigan Sportsmen first to support conservation: Formation of conservation organizations Audubon 1905 Ducks Unlimited 1937 MUCC 1937 The Nature Conservancy 1950 MDHA 1972 Pheasants Forever 1982 Waterfowl USA 1983 Renowned waterfowl areas Saginaw Bay, St. Clair Flats, Detroit River, Western Lake Erie Hunting Heritage

  13. Honoring Yesterday Public Engagement • Federal Duck Stamp (1934) • Generated billions of dollars to establish much of the national wildlife refuge system including Shiawassee, Detroit River and Seney in Michigan • Pittman-Robertson Act (1937) • Generated billions for federal and state acquisition and management of lands for wildlife, public hunting, and viewing from tax on sporting arms and ammunition • Regulatory action in 1970’s • Clean Water Act (1972) • Geomare-Anderson Wetlands Protection Act (1979) • Michigan Waterfowl Stamp Program (1976) • Provided funds to acquire more than 8,000 acres of wetlands for public waterfowl habitat and hunting • MDNR Managed Waterfowl Area Program • Acquired wetlands • Provided public hunting opportunities

  14. Engaging Today Populations and Habitat • Michigan mallard population in decline over the last 15 years • Habitat quality and size has been impacted due to invasive species, pollution, and development • However, Michigan is still a leader in wetland and waterfowl resources • Opportunities exist for private landowners to conserve habitat • NAWMP MI goals 1998-2013 have been met and exceeded • Protected 246,000 acres of existing habitat • Protected area exceeds goals by 39% • Michigan has received 49 federal NAWCA grants between 1987-2012 to protect habitat • Over $16.6 million was secured and matched by over $57.5 million of non-federal funds from partners • Conserved 47,300 acres of habitat (wetlands and associated uplands)

  15. Engaging Today Hunting Heritage • Tremendous hunting opportunities remain • However, the number of waterfowl hunters is declining • More opportunities to hunt have been created by: • Restoration and protection of habitat by conservation groups, government agencies, and others • MDNR Managed Waterfowl Areas • Eliminating the age limit on hunting • Youth waterfowl hunting weekend in mid-September • Youth preference hunts on Managed Waterfowl Areas

  16. Engaging Today Public Engagement • Public places to view waterfowl are abundant • Fewer waterfowl hunting licenses and duck stamps are being purchased • Michigan hunting licenses are cheaper than most states • Public funding for conservation has decreased • Federal funding for wetland programs in jeopardy • Losing connection between people and the outdoors • Nature deficit disorder

  17. Building Tomorrow Populations and Habitat • Restored public showpieces: national wildlife refuges, MDNR Managed Waterfowl Areas, and Great Lakes coastal wetlands • Abundant and resilient waterfowl populations • Ample wetland habitat conserved to support waterfowl populations • Limited impacts by invasive species • Increased conservation on private lands

  18. Building Tomorrow Hunting Heritage • Celebrate our waterfowl heritage • More hunters pursuing waterfowl • Increase public understanding about the value of waterfowl hunting

  19. Building Tomorrow Public Engagement • An engaged public (hunters and non-hunters) that enjoys and actively supports waterfowl and wetlands conservation • Increased recreational use of wetlands • Funding to support waterfowl and wetland conservation • A shared responsibility for preserving Michigan’s Waterfowl Legacy • Diverse and outstanding waterfowl hunting and viewing opportunities

  20. Building Tomorrow:A role for all of us Connect or reconnect a new or former waterfowl hunter Buy a state or federal duck stamp to support wetlands conservation Restore habitat on your property with the help of partners or on your own Join a conservation organization that protects and restores wetlands Support legislation to protect and restore wetlands Donate to conservation projects Volunteer on a public conservation project Explore Michigan’s Wetland Wonders

  21. What legacy will we leave for tomorrow’s generations? Together, we can create the answer!