Maybe you can’t afford to buy the naming rights to a big-city arena, but the price is right for a Nebraska duck pond.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is inviting the public to help name a new waterfowl production area in south-central Nebraska.
The 162-acre site is southwest of Hildreth in Franklin County, about one-half mile west of the Ritterbush Waterfowl Production Area. Its proximity to several other wetlands increases the area’s habitat value, not only for waterfowl, but also for endangered whooping cranes, said Ronnie Sanchez, project leader of the Rainwater Basin Wetland Management District.
The land was purchased in 2006 by Ducks Unlimited, which restored the site’s wetland with the federal Natural Resources Conservation Service. The Fish and Wildlife Service purchased the land last year with Land and Water Conservation funds obtained with help from then-Sen. Ben Nelson, D-Neb., and other money.
Potential names may reflect local history, a prominent land feature, a wildlife species or something else.
“Only the individual’s imagination is the limit,” Sanchez said.
Entries should be submitted by noon March 1 to firstname.lastname@example.org, or by mail to USFWS Rainwater Basin WMD, P.O. Box 8, Funk, NE 68940. The winner will be notified prior to the dedication ceremony this spring and will receive a commemorative gift.
The naming contest is part of the federal agency’s commemoration of the Rainwater Basin Wetland Management District’s 50th anniversary.
The district was established in 1963 with the purchase of land for the Massie Waterfowl Production Area in Clay County. The district now manages 60 production areas in 13 south-central Nebraska counties, principally as wetland habitat for migrating waterfowl and other birds.
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