Matt and Marilyn Spong once thought of the wetland on their farm as a problem spot. Year after year, crops they planted there would either fail completely or produce a smaller yield then the rest of the farm. But rather than abandoning the area altogether, the Spongs got creative: with the help of the Service, Matt and Marilyn transformed their wet spot back into a natural wetland.
This time of year, piping plovers are returning to beaches up and down the East Coast, preparing to lay eggs and raise chicks in their summer homes. But where have these shorebirds been all winter? Biologists have discovered some in the Turks and Caicos Islands.
The origins of the Duck Stamp date back to 1934 and our Chief of the Biological Survey, Jay “Ding” Darling. Many of Darling’s initiatives involved a leap of faith, a belief that waterfowl hunters would voluntarily tax themselves to save their beloved ducks, that in the most dire era of the Depression people could be mobilized for aid to other creatures, and that the government could successfully solve a problem. All of these leaps of faith came to fruition.