Wood Duck Challenge

Outdoor News Annual Wood Duck Challenge

We are proud to recognize hundreds of kids and Outdoor News readers who build wood duck houses. Each participant receives a special patch and recognition of their work via a personal photo with their house in Outdoor News. Listed below is everything you need to build a wood duck house and submit your photo. Good luck and thanks for participating!

Habitat Day for Woodies!

The Prairie Pothole Chapter of the Minnesota Waterfowl Association invites the public to come and build a Wood Duck nest box at Prairie Woods Learning Center on Saturday, March 1, 2014 from 8 AM to noon.

Volunteers will be on hand to assist you and all tools will be provided to construct the nest box. Also, Roger Strand will be providing educational displays and next box best practices, including entertaining videos of wood ducks nesting and duckling jumps.

The all cedar Wood Duck nest box includes a predator guard, wood shavings, and a pole with all the mounting hardware. Each kit has a $25 value with a limit of 2 per family. Limited to 100 nest boxes.

For more information please contact:

  • LeRoy Dahkle - (320) 796-28=787
  • Craig Wasik - (320) 222-1082
  • Curt Mackendanz - (320) 796-6416
  • Troy Heck - (320) 235-0560

Chapter News

The Prairie Pothole Chapter is gearing up for an active spring and summer. Members are currently preparing for Habitat Day at the Prairie Woods Environmental learning Center on March 1, 2014. The chapter is also involved with 2 woody cover removal projects through the Conservation Partners Legacy Grant Program. The project sites are the Dietrich Lange and Kandi Wildlife Management Area's respectively. Additionally, the Chapter has approved funds to partner with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service for restoration on 3 sites, restoring 6 wetlands totaling 44 acres.

Finally, Committee members are selling MWA 128 gun raffle calendars again this year. Each calendar is $40 with three chances to win. The Chapter receives $10 from each calendar sold for the Chapters project account. Past calendar sales provided over $18K in project account funds! For more information about the calendar please contact LeRoy Dahkle at (320) 796-2787.

Wetlands: The Drain Game

Since signing on air in 1964 as the public television station serving North Dakota and northwestern Minnesota, Prairie Public's production crews have logged uncounted miles and thousands of hours creating quality series, documentaries, and performance shows that have become viewer's favorites.

Wetland Reserve Program at 20 Years!

The Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP) is a voluntary program offering landowners the opportunity to protect, restore, and enhance wetlands on their property.

Wetland Reserve Program at 20

Sea Level Rise, Subsidence, and Wetland Loss

A video from the USGS that describes the causes of wetland losses in the Mississippi River Delta

Wild Game Recipe Web sites

Now that fall is fully underway and most of us hopefully have some fresh game to cook for our families here is a short list of web sites for new recipes.

Minnesota Migration Report!

Prairie Pothole Day Wrap-up!

Another year and another great Prairie Pothole Day! Unlike in years past where we have worried about rain, the dusty driveway, or if we have enough clay pigeons for shooting this years big issue was the heat! It started warm and only got warmer as the day progressed. Despite the weather many were in attendance watching the seminars, shooting the 3D archery course, perusing the vendors and playing with the puppies. All in all it was another great event and we look forward to seeing you at next years event.


A more in depth review of Prairie Pothole Day and Chapter events will be available once falls winds down and chapter members focus returns to conservation and habitat restoration!


Aquatic Invasive Species - MN Waters at Risk

Wood Duck Nest Boxes

Best PracticesRoger Strand, a founding member of the Prairie Pothole Chapter, is a nationally recognized authority on wood ducks and nesting structures. He has spent years observing wood duck nesting practices on Stoney Ridge Farm and has refined these observations into some best practices. These include mounting the nesting box on a pole instead of high in a tree. The use of predator guards to protect nesting hens. The proper placement of wood duck nesting structures in the landscape. Advantages of these best practices include easier maintenance , no ladders required, and better predator protection. Placing nesting structures in trees requires ladders and they can never by adequately protected from predators. Rogers best practices approach simplifies your life while ensuring nest box protection. While the predator guard provides protection from the ground it is important to recognize that predators can reach the nesting box from adjacent trees and limbs, so it is important to maintain at least a 8-10 foot zone around each box. More information about wood ducks and nesting structures can be found on the wood duck society web site.

Building a Wood Duck Box

Troy Heck - Citizen of the Year 2013

Citizen of the Year 2013Troy Heck, the current President of the Prairie Pothole Chapter of MWA, was honored at the State Banquet for his focus and dedication to habitat restoration, public outreach and education, and drive to continue the mission of the Chapter.

Prairie Pothole Chapter Recognized

Chapter of the YearFor the first time in the history of the Minnesota Waterfowl Association a local group was voted 'Chapter of the Year' two years in a row. The Prairie Pothole Chapter received this recognition at the State MWA Awards Banquet on Saturday, February, 2, 2013. The Chapter was recognized for it's ongoing efforts to protect and enhance wetland habitats in West Central Minnesota, meeting and exceeding fundraising goals, engaging families and youth in habitat projects throughout the year, and for continuing to the engage the public through the Prairie Pothole Day event.

Hawk Eye Nature Cam

Hawkeye Nat CamThe Prairie Pothole Chapter has been building, maintaining, and documenting wood duck nesting structures for 30 years in West Central Minnesota. While it is fun to check the nest boxes after the chicks have hatched improvements in camera technology now allow you to watch what is happening inside the cedar boxes. The Hawk Eye Nat Camera is an excellent way to keep an eye on the happenings in your nest boxes. The Chapter is working with Birdhouse Spy Cam out of West Linn, Oregon to supply these cameras in Minnesota. You can learn more about the camera's by following the link to Birdhouse spy cam. If you are interested in a camera for your own project please contact Troy Heck at 320-905-5451.