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Duck, Duck, Goose

     Off we go out into a marshy patch of woods where the vegetation is so thick at times that you can hardly walk and you constantly feel as if you are walking on a wet sponge.  Not the sort of spot you want to go on vacation but ducks and other waterfowl would consider it the Ritz.  Many tracts of land that were once havens for waterfowl have over the years been altered by agricultural practices.  These former wetlands are still beautiful but yet offer a less than desirable habitat for migrating waterfowl.


The Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP) is a voluntary program offering landowners the opportunity to protect, restore, and enhance wetlands on their property.  The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) provides technical and financial support to help landowners with their wetland restoration efforts.
     Our mission on this fine day was to accompany the biologist and make determinations regarding the best practices to implement which would restore this patch of woods into its original wildlife habitat.  We discussed the appropriate sites for construction of small water bodies (potholes) within this tract of land would attract migrating waterfowl.


As we slowly make our way through the thick underbrush we discover we are not alone.  We encounter signs that one of nature’s greatest architects (beaver) calls this wooded tract its home also.  The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is often thought of as the governmental agency primarily responsible for preventing land erosion but they are just as concerned with the protection of the natural habitat of wildlife which is the driving force behind visits into these deep dark jungles.


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