Wildlife Unlimited of Delta County

Original Statement of Purpose

            On May 6, 1982, a group of Delta County citizens met at the Pioneer Motor Inn to discus the information of a group which was to be called “Wildlife Unlimited of Delta County, Inc.”  Dr. Don Jacobs on Iron Mountain, Wildlife Unlimited, Inc. of Dickinson County attended the meeting to present some of the objectives and goals of the Dickinson County group.  To our knowledge, the Dickinson County group is the only other wildlife group of this type in the United States.  At the May 6th meeting, an attempt was made to form a group in Delta County.  Subsequent meeting were held, and we are now properly organized and beginning to accomplish some of our objectives.  Our first priority was an interim statement of purpose, of which a condensed version states that we will be a non-profit, non-stock corporation formed with the purpose of restoration and perpetuation of wildlife native to Delta County.  It will promote, carry on, and foster scientific research, education and training as it pertains to the management of these species of wildlife.  All programs will depend on local funding, and all funds which can be obtained through various fund-raising activities and pledges from citizens will be applied directly to the management of some wildlife habitat in Delta County.  Upland game, migratory water fowl, fish and many mom-game species of animals will be equally considered.  All projects selected for funding will benefit the general public – not a single special interest group.  Most habitat management will be confined to State owned lands or corporate owned lands which permit public access.  These projects will be supervised by employees of the DNR an U.S. Forest Service through a cooperative agreement.  In this way, dollars spent can apply directly to wildlife enhancement and not have to be spent on overhead, equipment or personnel.  Wildlife Unlimited will be open to any individual who subscribes to its general goals and purposes. 
This is not a politically oriented group in that its concerns for the management of our local natural resources will conform to the best available scientific thinking and management.

             
            To guide the organization in attaining these goals, a technical advisory committee has joined with Wildlife Unlimited and will offer alternative suggestions on needed wildlife habitat management in Delta County and its immediate areas.  The advisory group consists of biologists from the DNR, representatives of Mead Corporation, the local woodland jobber, members of the U.S. Forest Service, a member of the Delta County Road Commission, a member of the Escanaba High School Student Environmental Education, and the U.P. Federation of Land Owners.  We are presently attempting to obtain a representative from the Audubon Society to serve on the advisory board.


            
Our first fund-raising activity, a spaghetti feed, was held at the Gladstone National Guard Armory on June 14, 1982.  Admission was $5.00, and we raffled 2 shotguns, numerous paintings and other prizes.  Also, a supply of door prizes was made available through donations from local merchants.  We sold 600 tickets and during the evening we served 472 people. Members of the Wildlife Unlimited and their spouses and friends served as waitresses, cooks1 helpers, and did the clean-up work.  We were also assisted by the Explorer Scouts of Escanaba in the serving of the meal. Local merchants donated food and discounted many items.  After the dinner a critique was held among the members and need for .improvement was discussed.  Two of our members, Attorneys Terry Jardis and Peter Strom proceeded to set up the By-Laws and draw up and file the Articles of Incorporation, with the Department of Commerce.  We have received our corporate seal, and the attorneys are working with a local CPA in obtaining a tax exempt status for the organization.

A logo was designed and donated to the organization by "Design Associates” of Escanaba and Green Bay.

With the spaghetti feed completed and money in the bank, we started looking toward worthwhile projects.  Due to the time of the year, we are limited as to what we can do as far as planting trees, or bringing turkeys, geese and so forth into the area.  Therefore, we contracted with a local fishery to purchase a stock of brook trout.  At this point, the number of trout available is not known.  They are in the 5 to 9 inch category and will be planted in the Whitefish River system as soon as water temperature is favorable.  Our next project, a (Wildlife Unlimited) walking trail, will include brushing out one mile of a logging road in the North Delta County area, and planting vegetation which will benefit wild animals and birds.

Also, we have been advised by the U.S. Forest Service that there is a problem with, the Whitefish River deer yard.  Since it is not profitable for loggers to cut less than five acre sections in the months of December, January and February, the Forest Service has problems getting loggers into the areas where the deer are in most need, so Wildlife Unlimited has made a commitment to keep abreast of the situation this coming winter.  We will work with Don Elsing of the U.S. Forest Service, and in the event of a bad winter, Wildlife Unlimited will attempt to provide wood cutters with a base salary which would make it more profitable for them to go in and cut small sections.  This will improve the deer yard and provide food for the deer during the severe winter months.

We have one other major project planned for this winter. Some Canadian geese winter in the Detroit area rather than traveling south, often these geese become a nuisance and are trapped by the DNR.  We intend to retrieve the geese from the Detroit area, and contract a local farmer to house the geese during the winter months.  In the spring, we will build nests and provide food at a. predetermined spot.  The geese wings will be clipped to keep them at that lake.  Their young will hatch there and since the young goslings have a homing instinct, we are hopeful they will return each year.

 

Our major fund raising activity will be the fall banquet which will be held September 23, 1982, at the Terrace Motor Inn.  This banquet will begin at 5:00 p.m. with a prime rib dinner at 7:00 p.m.  We are in the process of collecting and purchasing numerous door prizes, raffle prizes, and auction items to be given out during the course of the evening.  Tickets for this banquet are $40.00 per person, which includes your meal, one year membership in the Wildlife Unlimited Club and eligibility for door prizes.

We have 15 members on the Board of Directors who are meeting weekly in an attempt to make the fall banquet a success. Also, we are working with the Advisory Board as to what projects can be undertaken.  The support from members of the community both in donation of time and expressions of satisfaction has been most gratifying.  We are neither for nor against hunting and fishing.  We will attempt to help any type of wildlife creature whether it is a game bird or a humming bird.  If we can improve the habitat and conditions in Delta County so that more of these species are observed, we will consider our efforts successful.

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