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Ontario’s Natural Infrastructure

The need for wetland conservation to support a healthy and prosperous Ontario has never been greater.

Wetlands play a starring role in Ontario’s watersheds, connecting across the province in a natural mosaic that sustains plants, animals and people alike. To drain or degrade wetlands here and there is like chipping a hole in the collective water pipe that sustains all of us.

Without clean water, communities face declining health and opportunity. Families without clean water spend time and resources just to reach a baseline of security. Picture the Ontario that you want to live in. Now picture this beautiful province without the living things that need clean water to function or live. Pollution, climate change and competing land uses are affecting forests, wetlands, lakes and streams.

Wetlands are a natural solution.

Green frog © DUC/Kyle Borrowman

Wondering if our work adds up?

Here is DUC’s conservation footprint in Ontario.
As of March 31, 2021

1 million ACRES CONSERVED

Since 1974

3,397 LANDOWNERS

Protecting vital habitat

5,032 HABITAT PROJECTS

Under our care

New small wetland on Kettle Creek Conservation Authority naturalized field
New small wetland on Kettle Creek Conservation Authority naturalized field © Kettle Creek Conservation Authority

Wetlands Conservation Partner Program

The Province of Ontario has committed $30 million over five years (2020-2025) to create and restore wetlands in priority regions. DUC is receiving $6 million in 2021 for wetland projects to improve water quality, support climate resiliency, mitigate flood risk and generate local economic activity in the Lake Ontario and Lake Erie drainage basins, one of the most significant migratory stopover areas on the continent—and an area under growing population pressure.

Ontario municipalities spend an annual average of $218,148 on invasive-species management, per Invasive Species Centre research. We must avoid a “point of no return” where costs outpace the ability of rural municipalities to protect themselves.
Ontario municipalities spend an annual average of $218,148 on invasive-species management, per Invasive Species Centre research. We must avoid a “point of no return” where costs outpace the ability of rural municipalities to protect themselves. © DUC

Invasive Species

Invasive species are changing the land and water we love. They overwhelm habitat, choking out native wildlife and vegetation. They spread aggressively and hold their ground stubbornly. Turning back invasive species takes science, engineering and commitment.

Learn more about our work with aquatic invasive species:


The Latest Stories from Ontario

Waswanipi Wetland Hero reveals plastic hidden in waterways

Waswanipi Wetland Hero reveals plastic hidden in waterways

DUC names Traci Blacksmith a Wetland Hero. For the past year, Blacksmith has been doing clean-ups along the Ottawa River and the wetland Mud Lake.

Spectacular Things Spring Brings

Spectacular Things Spring Brings

We've made a list of some of the spectacular things spring brings in Ontario. They're guaranteed to light up your days.

Daryl Hutton is DUC’s Volunteer of the Year in Ontario

Daryl Hutton is DUC’s Volunteer of the Year in Ontario

Daryl Hutton’s passion for bird habitat began when he was a boy growing up on his family’s farm. Today, supporting conservation and enjoying the outdoors is a way life.

Meet the winners of the Wetland Centres of Excellence case study competition 

Meet the winners of the Wetland Centres of Excellence case study competition 

Proposed solution to sea-level rise in Atlantic Canada helps team clinch top honours.

BUILDING NATURE

Ontario Resources for You

Wetland Restoration

Wetland Restoration

If wetlands have been drained or altered on your land, we can help you bring them back to life.

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Wood Duck Nest Boxes

Wood Duck Nest Boxes

Watch our wood duck nest box installation series.

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Hunting in Ontario

Hunting in Ontario

We are pleased to be able to provide opportunities for the public to enjoy DUC properties. These are truly special places that the hard-earned dollars and support of our members, the local community, and other important funders have helped us secure and protect.

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