I spent some time this weekend getting my ducks in a row, quite remarkably, pertaining to open land preservation that is most likely to be known as a duck habitat. This area along the Delaware Bay was once famous for it duck populations. Now we have only a small fraction of that peak population. Duck population declines paralleled almost every other exploited aquatic species around here.  But ducks are generally growing in population around here lately and I hope to help keep that trend going.

Some people may be surprised and other will likely disagree that the best way to preserve duck habitat and build duck populations is to partner with duck hunters. I don’t intent to attempt to explain the rationale in this blog post but consider that many environmental activists have reached the same conclusion. This weekend I spoke with a bunch of duck hunters; all passionate environmentalists with a huge respect for these birds. I know, some still say it doesn’t make sense.

To make an open space land deal, it is important to first identify all of the stakeholders. There are more than I first realized. Then seek their opinion, ask for their general support and blessing, and leave the door open for future discussion. This is how environmental deal-making is accomplished, at least in my little corner of southwest New Jersey.



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