Deadline approaching for Minnesota Waterfowl Association's Woodie Camp
Each summer since 1989, young waterfowlers from around the state have gathered at the Minnesota Waterfowl Association's Woodie Camp. Developed with guidance from professionals of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Woodie Camp is a summer youth camp like no other.
It’s really a week-long immersion into all things waterfowl.
“Basically, we want to expose campers to waterfowl in every way,” said Brad Nylin, MWA executive director. "It all revolves around Waterfowl 365, or every aspect of waterfowl in a 365-day year.”
Camp is held at the Prairie Wetlands Learning Center (PWLC) in Fergus Falls.
Fifty kids attend each year and “campers” traditionally come from all over the state of Minnesota. This year’s camp will be held Aug. 6-12, 2017.
Campers are dropped off on Sunday and picked up the following Saturday. In between the kids learn everything about nesting habitat, identifying prairie grasses and why they are so important; to wetlands, their purpose and what ducks eat. Waterfowl identification and migration are also covered.
Campers are instructed in dog training and how to set decoy on the water and in the field. Building wood duck houses, mallard hen houses as well as learning how to carve decoys and paint decoys are also part of the curriculum. Learning about cleaning ducks and how to cook them is always a hit with campers. Shooting clay targets is a big part of camp.
Classes on first aid in the field and a “lake day” with boat and water safety are also included. A real highlight of camp is actually being able to handle live ducks, attach bands and release them
There is no cost to attend Woodie Camp and it's open to those ages 13 to 15 - who have completed firearms safety. A simple application is required which includes a short essay on why the youth would like to come to camp.
Once selected to attend a $150 deposit required. This is returned upon completion of Camp.
The cost of attending is removed because of the camp’s supporters such as Fergus Falls Fish and Game Club.
Applications for Woodie Camp can be found on the MWA website http://www.mnwaterfowl.com/ Interested participants see for themselves what happens at Woodie Camp by going to the website and clicking on the Woodie Camp tab and selecting a year.
Once there people will see lots of photos, videos and blogs.
The application deadline is May 15, 2017.