Local business supports wetlands
A local outdoor shop hopes to raise money to preserve the natural habitat that its clientele loves.
Two Canadian Bass Pro Shops are supporting Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC) for the fourth year in its annual DUC Conservation Month.
The Bass Pro Shops location at CrossIron Mills mall, along with a Toronto store, is partaking in a month-long campaign to fundraise for DUC.
“We believe in the mission of Ducks Unlimited,” said Marty Luna, marketing data analyst for Bass Pro Shops.
Fundraising manager for DUC Central Southern Alberta Dahrlyne Knaus said Bass Pro Shops has contributed about $50,000 to date.
For every dollar donated by a customer during DUC Conservation Month, Bass Pro Shops will donate 50 cents. Customers who donate money will also be entered into a draw to win one of 10 $500 gift certificates to the store. There are no limitations to how many times a customer can be entered in the draw.
Knaus said DUC is 100 per cent reliant on donations and grants to sustain its operations.
“Every customer that makes a donation during this month helps build a healthier world for future generations,” Knaus said.
Barry Bishop, DUC head of wetland restoration, said the organization is currently in the process of undergoing a large wetland restoration project in Airdrie, but he was unable to release details regarding the matter before plans are confirmed.
He said in the last 10 years or so, DUC has actively worked to restore wetlands.
“On an annual basis we restore about 600 acres of wetlands across the province,” Bishop said.
He said the province has lost between 60 and 70 per cent of its wetlands since industrialization and farming attempts to become more efficient around the 1960s.
DUC restores wetlands by first obtaining rights from landowners and restoring the property, then selling it with a wetland protection guarantee.
“(Wetlands) provide a wide multitude of functions,” Bishop said, noting they contribute to filtering water, are key to wildlife lifecycles, help moderate droughts and floods, offer recreational opportunities and promote biodiversity.
“It’s important for the public to really start appreciating wetlands.”
Luna said Bass Pro Shops customers should contribute to DUC this month because the organization closely matches customer ideals.
“Our core customer is a hunting and fishing customer, and Ducks Unlimited would be the same core member,” Luna said.
“If we don’t support our partners in conservation, we may not have land and wildlife to hunt. It could put our land in jeopardy and our wildlife to hunt in jeopardy.”