Thursday, October 9, 2014

MDC, DU to dedicate newly renovated Duck Creek Conservation Area

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. -- The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) and Ducks Oct. 11, at the area’s headquarters, beginning at 10 a.m.
Unlimited (DU) invites the public to attend a celebration and dedication of the Duck Creek Conservation Area (CA) in Bollinger, Stoddard, and Wayne Counties, celebrating the renovations completed to date. The dedication will be held
“This will be a special day to celebrate our wetland restoration efforts at Duck Creek Conservation Area,” said Matt Bowyer, MDC’s southeast wildlife regional supervisor. “It will also be a special day as we recognize and say thank you to the people who’ve supported this project and made it possible.”
Plaques will be unveiled with names of recent Missouri Ducks Unlimited Greenwing Legacy members, as well as the names of Ducks Unlimited Major donors and others who gave generously to make the wetland restoration project possible as part of the Mingo Basin Partnership. There will also be a tour of recent project activities immediately following the dedication ceremony.
The Golden Anniversary Wetlands Initiative, launched in 2004, is an ambitious partnership to rehabilitate and enhance wetlands at five of MDC’s oldest wetland conservation areas. Managers at these areas face an array of challenges as they have reached, or soon will reach, their 50th anniversary. The original infrastructure of these areas has outlived reasonable life expectancy, according to Bowyer. In addition, extreme landscape changes have had unforeseen and devastating effects on certain aspects of these areas. Moreover, the science and art of wetland management and engineering, design, and construction capabilities has drastically evolved from five decades ago.
“Projects like these are a testimony to the relationship between Ducks Unlimited, their volunteers, the Missouri Department of Conservation and numerous other partners.” said Mark Flaspohler, DU manager of conservation.  “This ‘Big Rivers’ part of the country is critical to waterfowl making the grand passage from the breeding grounds down to wintering grounds to the south.”
Major efforts are necessary to restore the wetland management functionality of these areas, and their rehabilitation is the focus of Missouri’s Golden Anniversary Wetland Initiative, under the following objectives:
·         Devise and finalize plans for rehabilitating MDC’s oldest wetland management areas.
·         Incorporate 21st Century wetland and ecological science into restoration approaches while avoiding a “repair” mentality in planning needed restorations.
·         Assemble diverse partnerships necessary to fund the efforts.
·         Implement the improvements/modifications over the twelve year period from 2005-2017.
To get to the Duck Creek CA headquarters, take MO-74 W from Cape Girardeau (exiting off I-55) and drive 5 miles; turn right onto MO-25 S and drive 1.8 miles; at traffic circle, continue straight to stay on MO-25 S and drive 15.9 miles to Advance Missouri; turn right onto State HWY C/S Ruth Street, continue to follow State Hwy C for 9.8 miles; turn left onto MO-51 S and drive approximately 3.5 miles to Duck Creek Conservation Area Headquarters, destination will be located on your right.
For more information on Duck Creek CA, go to mdc.mo.gov.