MCPHERSON — A $200,000 donation from Archer Daniels Midland Co. to Ducks Unlimited will help secure a grant of more than $1 million that should be enough to finish restoring the McPherson Valley Wetlands, a Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks official said last week.
"The goal was to get 5,000 acres. This should get us there," said Randy Clark, a regional public lands superintendent for Wildlife and Parks. "This will allow us to apply for a North American Wetlands Council grant. This would be our fifth and would finish up the project or get us real close."
The wetlands area runs from two miles north of Conway to two miles south of Inman in McPherson County, Clark said. About 4,000 acres of it are developed as a wildlife area, and it had about 12,000 visitors, mostly hunters, in 2003.
The wetlands provide habitat for ducks and geese in the marsh areas, which hold about 2 feet of water, and outlying areas hold pheasants and quail, he said.
The donation and grant would be used for:
- Maintenance and enhancement of wildlife habitat.
- Purchase of additional land from willing sellers.
- Replacement of an antiquated pump with a new, environmentally friendly model.
- Construction of roads for better access.
- Maintenance of dikes, ditches and water-control structures.
- Seeding of nonwetland acres with native prairie grasses and other plants.