DU recently completed the first phase of work on a recently awarded North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA) grant in the Suisun Marsh, which is a part of the San Francisco Bay Estuary. The Suisun Marsh Wetland Enhancement Project will eventually help enhance 3,763 acres of habitat, combining $2 million in partner funds with $1 million in NAWCA grant funds to underwrite wetlands restoration and enhancement activities.
Suisun Marsh is a 116,000 acre natural wetland complex comprising tidal sloughs, bays, managed wetlands and associated uplands just west of the confluence of the Sacramento and San Joaquin Rivers, and is the largest contiguous brackish marsh in the United States, representing about 12 percent of the remaining natural wetlands in California.. Of the $1M, more than half of the funds will be utilized to enhance public lands while the rest will be utilized to enhance private lands. This work will provide long-term migratory bird and wetlands conservation benefits through the enhancement of wetland and upland habitat. The Grizzly Island Wildlife Area (GIWA) is owned by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and is managed to provide habitat for migratory birds, hunting and public opportunities for wildlife-oriented recreation.
“Ducks Unlimited is excited to have a stronger presence in the Marsh and we will be continuing to improve habitat through partnering with duck clubs and public agencies, and we look forward to the next round” said DU Regional Biologist Aaron Will, who prepared the grant application.
Project work for Suisun Reclamation District 1607 benefiting several duck clubs has already completed, while work for the remaining six projects will start in the summer of 2016.