Winners of the Consumers Energy-sponsored Wetland Wonders Challenge II, hosted by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and Michigan United Conservation Clubs, were awarded on Saturday, Sept. 14, at the Pointe Mouillee Waterfowl Festival.

To be entered in the drawing, participants had to visit at least one Wetland Wonders Challenge II event at any of the seven southern Michigan Wetland Wonders. Events included guided bird-watching tours, hikes, paddling events, nature art clinics and more.

Seven winners were chosen and awarded prize packages including unique Michigan outdoor experiences such as Upper Peninsula hikes and boat tours, guided falconry hunts, chartered fishing trips and private sandhill crane viewing at a bird sanctuary. The winners drawn were from several parts of the state including Paw-Paw, Kalamazoo, Portland, Lansing, Newaygo and Woodhaven. (Not all winners opted to have their names released.)

Michigan’s Wetland Wonders are the seven premier managed waterfowl areas in southern Michigan: Fennville Farm Unit at the Allegan State Game Area, Fish Point State Wildlife Area, St. Clair Flats State Wildlife Area on Harsens Island, Muskegon County Wastewater Facility, Nayanquing Point State Wildlife Area, Pointe Mouillee State Game Area and Shiawassee River State Game Area.

“These areas are known for some of the best waterfowl hunting in the state, but what many people don’t know about are the great wildlife viewing, hiking, kayaking, birding, fishing and other outdoor recreation opportunities there during the spring and summer,” said Barbara Avers, DNR waterfowl and wetlands specialist.

“My husband and I are busy planning our Upper Peninsula weekend,” said winner Pamela Poston. “We are looking forward to it.”

This fall a new Wetland Wonders Challenge will begin on Oct. 12 and continue through Jan. 31, 2014. The contest will focus on managed waterfowl hunting opportunities at the seven Wetland Wonders. Seven winners will be chosen on Feb. 10, 2014. To be entered, participants must hunt at three of the seven southern Michigan Wetland Wonders and submit an entry form. To learn more, visit

The Wetland Wonders Challenge is part of the Michigan Waterfowl Legacy (MWL), a 10-year, cooperative partnership to restore, conserve and celebrate Michigan’s waterfowl, wetland and waterfowl hunting community. The initiative is a “call to action” to honor yesterday, engage today and build for tomorrow.

Logo courtesy Michigan Department of Natural Resources

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