Delta Waterfowl was started back in 1911 by a hunter (James Ford Bell) who decided he would put 3 ducks back for each one he shot. Later the idea of a waterfowl research facility was born. In 1938, Hans (Al) Hochbaum arrived at Delta and became the first scientific director. He and his colleagues pioneered the study of breeding duck ecology and made seminal discoveries on habitat use and behavior. Today Delta sponsors many graduate and doctorate students in their research studies. Delta Waterfowl has instituted programs for predator management, alternative land use services, hen houses and adopt-a-pothole.
Our family would fly to Manitoba each July to hear the students give their research presentations. We also had the opportunity to go through the research station there at Delta Beach. This was the first time the girls got to see egg candling. There were many ducks and geese at all ages and stages. One summer there was even a big tank that a student used to study diver ducks. It was because of these first few years and our experiences that the girls and I came to love waterfowl and the beautiful country of Canada.
Since that time the research station has closed at Delta Beach and some of the buildings are gone. As the girls and I walked around this year, memories came flooding back. They remember the ducks and geese, the eggs, bonfires with our friends and the students. So many good times. It was really nice to go back to a place we hadn't seen in many years and relive those days.
|Mary and Grace summer of 2003|
Mary, Emma and Grace October 2013