Ducks Unlimited Inc.

About Ducks Unlimited Inc.

Established in 1937, Ducks Unlimited, Inc. (DU) has conserved more than 14.5 million acres thanks to contributions from millions supporters across the continent. A small group of concerned sportsmen launched an effort to study the problem of declining waterfowl populations as a result of long-term drought in North America, and in 1935 they conducted the first International Wild Duck Census. These conservation pioneers underscored that high-quality habitat was essential to healthy waterfowl populations. The study also found that the wetlands of Canada served as the primary breeding grounds for waterfowl and represented some of the most critical habitat for ducks and geese.



These conservation pioneers took an unprecedented step in founding Ducks Unlimited, a 501(c)3, non- profit organization dedicated to conserving habitat for waterfowl. In DU’s inaugural year of 1937, 6,720 members raised $90,000 which went into habitat restoration and enhancement projects in Canada. To complete the on-the-ground conservation work, Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC) was incorporated in 1938 and, on December 5 of that year, DU staff and Keemen volunteers completed the organization’s first restoration project at the Big Grass Marsh near Gladstone, Manitoba, naming it “Duck Factory Number One.”



Guided by science, DU works thoughout the United States. Hindsight explains history, but foresight builds a legacy. DU’s history evolved from the foresight of a small group of sportsmen who launched an unprecedented, international effort to save waterfowl by conserving habitat. DU’s founders and early members stepped forward to make a difference for North America’s waterfowl at a time when our country was in the grip of economic depression and severe drought. That spirit of volunteerism and of rising to meet profound challenges remains a fundamental part of the organization’s culture today. DU’s culture remains the prized secret and key to our continued success.



Over 80 years, DU’s mission of waterfowl habitat conservation has resulted in its working across the continent to serve the habitats that make possible the abundance of wildlife. Waterfowl, other migratory birds and hundreds of species of wildlife are not the only beneficiaries of DU’s habitat work. Wetlands also provide vital ecological benefits for people. Wetlands improve the overall health of our environment by recharging and purifying groundwater, moderating floods and reducing soil erosion. Wetlands are North America’s most productive ecosystems, providing critical habitat to more than 900 wildlife species, clean water for our communities, and invaluable recreational opportunities for all people to enjoy, but, just in the last 50 years, our nation has lost more than 17 million acres of wetlands.



Last year, in the United States alone, DU impacted more than 435,000 acres of critical breeding, migration and wintering habitat. Each year, the organization’s conservation success stems from the passion, commitment and dedication of Ducks Unlimited supporters, volunteers, partners and professional staff. DU has over 500 employees across the country and an annual operating budget of more than $200 million. Headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee, Ducks Unlimited has offices in California, Colorado, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, New York, North Dakota, South Carolina, Texas, Washington, and Washington, D.C., with sister organizations in Canada and Mexico.



Ducks Unlimited Inc., Ducks Unlimited Canada, and Ducks Unlimited de Mexico (DUMAC) work together to generate critical support and deliver habitat conservation in the most important waterfowl landscapes across North America. For decades, DU concentrated its conservation efforts on the breeding grounds of Canada’s prairies. As the science of waterfowl management advanced it became clear that effective conservation work must be continental in scope. The full range of habitats that the birds use – nesting, migra

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