Graves, Scalise and Ducks Unlimited Announce Nearly $5 Million In Federal Grants to conserve Louisiana wetlands and waterfowl habitats

Published 10:11 am Monday, May 3, 2021

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Congressmen Garret Graves and Steve Scalise, and Ducks Unlimited Southern Region Director Jerry Holden, announced Ducks Unlimited received $4,701,013 in matching federal grants to restore coastal wetlands and enhance wildlife habitat in South Louisiana. The U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) grants, made through the North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA), will be matched by nearly $11,099,156 Ducks Unlimited funds.

In 2019, Graves and Scalise requested these wetlands conservation funds, made through NAWCA, recognizing the importance of this grant partnership.

“These grants are a direct result of Congress, the conservation community, farmers, ranchers and private landowners coming together to make a difference in creating and protecting important habitat. And this specific announcement is a direct result of the great work done by our partners at Ducks Unlimited and others in our communities. For those that love to spend early mornings in a duck blind, fishing or birdwatching – these investments are for you. These funds will help restore critical land areas, stimulate local economies and jobs, restore wildlife habitat, and conserve Sportsman’s Paradise for the next generation,” Graves said.

“Our coastal wetlands serve as Louisiana’s first line of defense against powerful Gulf storms, and preserving our coast is critical to protecting the families and communities in South Louisiana. In addition, our coastal wetlands are home to the rich wildlife that make Louisiana the ‘Sportsman’s Paradise.’ Ducks Unlimited has long been a strong partner in our efforts to preserve our coast and protect essential wildlife habitats in Louisiana, and this announcement is welcome news for southeast Louisiana families and communities that rely upon our wetlands,” Scalise said.

“The public-private partnerships required by NAWCA projects offer some of the very best return on investment in conservation,”  Ducks Unlimited Southern Region Director Jerry Holden said. “That’s especially true in Louisiana, where the health of our wetlands is equally important to people, industry and waterfowl. Congressmen Graves and Scalise have long been advocates for voluntary conservation programs like NAWCA, and we appreciate their work to help secure this important funding for projects in Louisiana’s First District and throughout the state.”

This year’s Louisiana’s projects:

  • Continental Marsh Enhancement
    • Local Partner: Ducks Unlimited
    • Award Amount: $1,000,000
    • Ducks Unlimited Match: $2,458,469
    • Project: 5,280 acres in Orleans and Terrebonne Parishes
  • Raccourci Bay Marsh Enhancement
    • Local Partner: Ducks Unlimited
    • Award Amount: $2,000,000
    • Ducks Unlimited Match: $4,609,866
    • Project: 4,000 acres in Lafourche, St. Bernard, and Terrebonne Parishes
  • Holt Collier & Upper Ouachita NWRs Wetland Enhancement
    • Local Partner: Ducks Unlimited
    • Award Amount: $1,701,013
    • Ducks Unlimited Match: $4,030,821
    • Project: 6,388 acres in Avoyelles and Morehouse Parishes, as well as acreage in Arkansas and Mississippi

 About NAWCA:

NAWCA is a public-private partnership-based program that matches non-federal and federal funds to protect, restore and manage wetlands and associated habitats for migratory birds and other wildlife. The NAWCA grants are approved by the Migratory Bird Conservation Commission. Across North America, including Canada and Mexico, the grants will provide the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and its partners the ability to help conserve or restore nearly 500,000 acres of wetland and associated upland habitats for waterfowl, shorebirds and other birds. Nationally, the grants will be matched by nearly $125 million in partner funds. Partners in NAWCA projects include private landowners, states, local governments, conservation organizations, sportsmen’s groups, Tribes, land trusts and corporations.

To read the full DOI press release, click here. To read the nationwide awards, click here