to further conserve and restore Missouri’s important fish, forest and wildlife resources.
National Wild Turkey Federation
The National Wild Turkey Federation plays an important role in the conservation of Missouri’s wild turkey population, and it helps Missouri remain one of the nation’s top wild turkey states. Missouri has 116 Federation chapters, totaling more than 13,300 members. Approximately half of the proceeds of their chapter fundraisers support the Department’s priority upland habitat projects.
“The Federation has been a tremendous partner in conservation here in Missouri,” says MDC Deputy Director Tom Draper. “Not only have they been responsible for a great deal of on-the-ground wildlife habitat improvement, but they also do an outstanding job of getting folks involved in the outdoors through their outreach efforts.”
The Federation’s primary focuses in Missouri are on habitat enhancement, promoting hunter access, wild turkey research, and outreach and education. Since 1985, the Federation has invested $3.5 million in Missouri. The Federation’s habitat enhancement projects have improved almost 35,000 acres in the state. Significant dollars have also been spent on education, scholarships and outreach events for youth, women and people with disabilities.
In recent years, the Federation’s state chapter has provided significant funds to help landowners make habitat improvements in southwest and northeast Missouri. The state chapter also has partnered with The Nature Conservancy to restore almost 1,000 acres of tallgrass prairie in the Grand River grasslands of north-central Missouri. Learn more at nwtf.org.
Duck Stamps Benefit Wildlife and People
Since 1934, the sales of federal Duck Stamps have generated more than $750 million to help purchase or lease more than 5.3 million acres of waterfowl habitat in the United States. For every $1 spent on Duck Stamps, 98 cents goes directly to purchase vital habitat for protection in the National Wildlife Refuge System.
Waterfowl are not the only wildlife to benefit from Duck Stamps. Many plants and animals that rely on wetland habitats have also prospered, including a variety of birds, mammals, fish, reptiles and amphibians. In addition, an estimated one-third of the nation’s endangered and threatened species find food or shelter in refuges established using Duck Stamp funds.
“The Duck Stamp Program did more than just raise dollars for habitat; the artwork reached more people, outside of hunters, to become passionate and engaged in conservation work,” says Doyle Brown, MDC’s federal aid coordinator.
“If there were no duck stamps, there would be virtually no waterfowl or other migratory birds in Missouri or in the rest of the country.”
People benefit from the Duck Stamp Program, too. Missourians have places to enjoy their hunting heritage and places to boat, fish and watch wildlife. Moreover, healthy wetlands help purify water supplies, store floodwater, reduce soil erosion and sedimentation, and provide spawning areas for fish important to anglers.
Understandably, the Federal Duck Stamp Program has been called one of the most successful conservation programs ever initiated and is a highly effective way to conserve America’s vital wetland resources. Learn more at go.usa.gov/nmj.