Wednesday, September 21, 2011

NAWCA approves three $1M grants for SC ducks

Enhanced wetlands often translates into more ducks
Congratulations are in order for National Audubon Society, The Nature Conservancy, and Ducks Unlimited. Each organization was approved on September 14, 2011 to receive a grant in the amount of $1 million dollars for conservation work in three separate areas of the Lowcountry Outdoors!!  Check out the details below and be sure to notice how matching funds can be leveraged with these North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA) grants.

Project: ACE Basin: Edisto River Corridor Phase VI.
Location: Dorchester, Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton and Orangeburg counties.
Congressional District: 1 and 6.
Grantee: National Audubon Society.
Contact: Norman L. Brunswig, nbrunswig@audubon.org.
Partners: Lowcountry Open Land Trust; Charleston County Greenbelt Program; private landowner; The Nature Conservancy; South Carolina Conservation Bank.
Approved: September 2011.
Grant: $1,000,000.
Matching Funds: $7,876,344.
Nonmatching Funds/Other Federal Funds: $31,644.
Joint Venture Region: Atlantic Coast.
Flyway: Atlantic.
BCR: 27-Southeast Coastal Plain.

The purpose of the ACE Basin: Edisto River Corridor initiative is to create a largest forested wetland preserve at the Audubon Center and Sanctuary at the Francis Beidler Forest in Four Holes Swamp, and to add to protected lands within the riparian and coastal zone of the Edisto River and ACE Basin.  The forest’s wetland habitats support more than 140 species, including 38 species of breeding neotropical migrants.  This project will protect 13 tracts that include stream and river corridor, forested wetlands, salt marsh, brackish pond and upland habitat.  Species that will benefit include American black duck, mallard, wood duck, swallow-tailed kite, Swainson’s warbler, wood stork, and other wading bird species, as well as painted bunting, prairie warbler, common ground-dove, and northern parula.  The project expands Beidler Forest to 16,855 acres, enhancing public use for birding, canoeing, hunting, hiking and environmental education.


Project: Santee Delta and Winyah Bay Wetlands Protection Project.
Location: 14 South Carolina counties.
Congressional District: 1 and 6.
Grantee: The Nature Conservancy.
Contact: Marcia Whitehead, mwhitehead@tnc.org.
Partners: Pee Dee Land Trust; Charleston County Greenbelt; private individuals.
Approved: September 2011.
Grant: $1,000,000.
Matching Funds: $2,102,600.
Nonmatching Funds/Other Federal Funds: None.
Joint Venture Region: Atlantic Coast.
Flyway: Atlantic.
BCR: 27-Southeast Coastal Plain.



This project represents the first of a three-phase effort to permanently protect strategic tracts in the Santee Delta and Winyah Bay region of northern coastal South Carolina.  Phase I will protect five tracts totaling 3,730 acres, including 2,951 wetland acres and 780 acres of associated uplands, to benefit breeding, migrating, and wintering birds.  Waterfowl species that will benefit from this project include American black duck, mottled duck, mallard, American wigeon and wood duck.  The project area will also support neotropical migratory birds during the breeding season and migration, including the swallow-tailed kite, prothonotary warbler, black-throated green warbler, Swainson’s warbler and wood thrush.


Project: South Carolina Lowcountry Wetlands Initiative II.
Location: Allendale, Beaufort, Charleston, Clarendon, Colleton, Georgetown and Hampton counties.
Congressional District: 1, 2, and 6.
Grantee: Ducks Unlimited, Inc.
Contact: Craig Leschack, cleschack@ducks.org.
Partners: Wetlands America Trust; The Nature Conservancy; Santee Cooper; South Carolina Department of Natural Resources; Nemours Wildlife Foundation; Hasty Point Plantation.
Approved: September 2011.
Grant: $1,000,000.
Matching Funds: $5,580,822.
Nonmatching Funds/Other Federal Funds: $521,000.
Joint Venture Region: Atlantic Coast.
Flyway: Atlantic.
BCR: 27-Southeast Coastal Plain.



The South Carolina Lowcountry Initiative, covering 3 million acres across 14 coastal counties, seeks to protect, enhance and restore important wetlands and uplands in six focus areas.  This project builds on the successes of the first phase by continuing to leverage financial contributions, expertise and management skills of eight partners.  The six enhancement projects and four acquisition projects in this grant will permanently protect 2,251 acres of important wetland and associated upland habitats on private land through conservation easements, and enhance 2,844 acres of managed wetlands.  The long-term strategy of this effort is to build on the network of public and private conservation lands within key watersheds that provide critical wetland and upland habitat for waterfowl, waterbirds, shorebirds, landbirds and other wetland-dependent wildlife and plants.

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