Wetland Values in Southern Ontario: Restoration and Conservation through partnership, 2014-15

Goals and Objectives

The purpose of this project is to protect and restore wetland habitats in priority habitat areas (PHA) across Ontario.

Restoration and securement strategies have been developed for each of these priority habitat areas and the majority of our habitat conservation efforts and funding will continue to be targeted at these priority areas with select wetland initiatives continuing to be implemented strategically throughout the remainder of the province as directed by management plans.

The goals of this project are:

1) Restore waterfowl brood rearing and pairing habitats.

2) Protect high quality upland and cavity nesting habitat.

3) To maintain water control infrastructure that is critical to the waterfowl productivity of existing wetland restoration projects.


Specific Habitat Products/Results Supported by WHC’s Contributions

Ducks Unlimited Canada will restore a minimum of 8 larger wetland projects using WHC’s contribution. There will also be (10-20) small wetland projects (pair ponds/nest boxes) that will be supported through these funds.

Benefits to Waterfowl, Wetland-Associated Species, and/or Other Wildlife

DUC waterfowl breeding production estimates are based on an assessment of the availability of local waterfowl spring-time pairing habitats in relation to availability and size of adjacent brood rearing habitats. Waterfowl breeding pair density is based on IBP (Indicated Breeding Pair) data (CWS), and nest success rates and duckling survival estimates are from DUC’s  Mallard Ecology Study (IWWR – 1998) completed in eastern Ontario.  DUC estimates that over a 20 year agreement, 166 waterfowl are produced using pairing/nesting habitat, and 200 waterfowl produced using cavity nesting habitat.

Relevance to Habitat Planning, Decision Making and/or Management

DUC chooses to invest in wetland restoration projects that function within a landscape context: pair habitat projects are chosen to work with adjacent brood water; brood water projects are not built unless pair habitat exists or can be created within the same complex. As such, and in contrast to an isolated pair pond for example, DUC wetland projects are extremely biologically diverse and provide the highest level of benefit normally associated with wetlands including flood attenuation, carbon sequestration, water quality improvements. All DUC wetland projects are implemented according to an agreed upon plan (EHJV) under the auspices of an international plan (NAWAMP).

Project Location

This project takes place in Southern Ontario with  priority areas including Haldimand, Niagara, Brant/Wellington, Simcoe, Grey, Bruce, Kawartha Lakes, Tweed, Prince Edward County, Hastings, Frontenac and Leeds.    

Approximately 30% of Ontario’s post-breeding waterfowl population originates from this agriculturally dominated landscape, while its coastal wetlands annually stage almost 9 million waterfowl during the spring and fall migration.

Project Contact

For more information on this project, please contact Amy Lorenzin, Head of Finance, Ducks Unlimited Canada, Barrie, ON.