Direct Programs

Alberta NAWMP Partners aim to retain important, wetland and upland habitats and facilitate wetland and upland restoration through securement programs that include land purchase, conservation easements, conservation agreements, management agreements, and forage agreements. These programs are delivered by Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC) and the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC).

New opportunities are continually sought to identify and create direct program opportunities among Partners, for example through integrated watershed management, biodiversity planning, wildlife and biodiversity enhancement beneficial management practices (BMPs).

Wetland Restoration

All restoration efforts seek to restore the historic hydrological and ecological function of previously drained wetlands. Most programs target small, temporary or seasonal wetlands, the type that have endured greatest losses as a result of agricultural growth. Restoration efforts typically involve minor earth-fill construction to apply “ditch plugs” on outlets of drained basins. DUC is currently the only partner who implements wetland restoration, with NCC actively facilitating wetland restoration opportunities through its securement efforts. Alberta Environment and Parks (AEP) creates opportunities for wetland restoration through the Alberta Wetland Policy.

Upland Restoration

Upland restoration activities include cropland-to-perennial cover conversion and planted nesting cover. Most cropland conversion is to pasture or hayland with regular agricultural use. Upland restoration programs are delivered by DUC and require minimum 10-year agreements and include securement of existing wetlands. Management of forage stands becomes the responsibility of landowners. Planted nesting cover is set-aside for waterfowl nesting on small amount of the highest quality, permanently secured lands. Only periodic management occurs to maintain cover quality. DUC is the only Alberta NAWMP Partner offering this program.

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The Alberta NAWMP Partnership is an excellent example of the cooperation we need. Working with partners is the key to moving conservation efforts along.

H. Loney Dickson
Past Chair of the Prairie Habitat Joint Venture (PHJV), Shorebird Working Group