The grant will support Delta’s duck production programs in Manitoba, benefiting hunters in Canada and the United States.
WINNIPEG, MANITOBA — A grant from the Manitoba Fish and Wildlife Enhancement Fund provides valuable resources to grow Delta Waterfowl’s Hen House program and enhance duck production efforts in Canada.
The $21,320 grant will fund the construction and installation of 100 new chicken coops in Manitoba. Fieldwork for the recently approved project will begin in late 2023, and will focus on areas with adequate wetlands and a high nesting density of mallards. Project Hen Houses will be ready for mallards early in the 2024 nesting season.
“Our Hen House program has grown substantially in recent years,” said Matt Chouinard, Delta Waterfowl’s senior director of waterfowl programs. “Grants like these are critical – they make a comprehensive difference to our programs, especially as we continue to expand them as part of the Million Duck Campaign.”
Chicken coops, used mainly by mallards, are nesting cylinders made of wire fencing and flax straw and erected on a post in small wetlands. Chickens and their nests are safe in the coops from many predators, including red foxes, badgers, and skunks, which frequently destroy the ducks’ nests in the sparse patches of grass. Research has shown that mallards that use roosts in some heavily farmed regions of Canada are 12 times more likely to incubate a nest than a mallard that nests on grass.
The organization also received a 2022 Manitoba Fish and Wildlife Enhancement Fund grant ($37,000), which funded the installation of 200 new chicken coops in Manitoba. No doubt many of these chicken coops are already being used by mallards in 2023.
“Coops are the most cost-effective management tool for producing mallards,” Chouinard said. “This grant, through the Manitoba Fish and Wildlife Enhancement Fund, helps expand our Duck Production Programs and benefits ducks and duck hunters in Manitoba and throughout North America.”
The Manitoba Fish and Wildlife Enhancement Fund, created in 2014, fosters an important partnership between the provincial government and Manitoba hunters and fishermen.
In 2022, Manitoba made a historic investment of $20 million to establish an endowment fund with the Winnipeg Foundation, whose goal is to secure long-term financial support for projects that enhance Manitoba’s fish and wildlife populations. Additional funding contributions include 10 percent of annual fees collected from Manitoba fishing, hunting and trapping license sales.
In addition to the Hen House grants in 2022 and 2023, the Manitoba Fish and Wildlife Enhancement Fund grant also committed additional funds to support and expand the pressing need for hunter recruitment efforts in Canada. The funds will support Delta’s R3 programs such as First Hunt, University Hunt Program and Defend the Hunt.
delta waterfowl is The Duck Hunters Organization, a leading conservation group working to raise ducks and secure the future of North American waterfowl hunting. Visit deltawaterfowl.org.
For more information on Delta Waterfowl’s roost programs, contact Matt Chouinard at [email protected].