Wascana Centre Authority will receive Canada 150 Infrastructure Program funding to help revitalize and rejuvenate the Waterfowl Park Display Ponds. The Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, and Member of Parliament for Regina-Wascana made the announcement on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development ,and Minister responsible for Western Economic Diversification Canada as part of the Western Economic Diversification Program. The matching grant will help ensure the Waterfowl Display Ponds remain a unique and special place for everyone to visit.
Wascana Centre Authority CEO Bernadette McIntrye commented on the announcement, “We are very thankful and appreciative of this grant. The Waterfowl Park not only provides a safe habitat for wildlife; it is an educational resource for subjects such as ecology, biology and nature study.”
Waterfowl Park Display Ponds is home to Wascana Centre's injured and captive waterfowl including geese, ducks and swans. The public are welcome to stop by to learn about and feed the birds in this location throughout the summer months. Display panels assist visitors in identifying and studying the waterfowl.
Wascana Centre is in the midst of a rejuvenation project for the Waterfowl Display Ponds. Earlier in 2016, a major clean-up project was undertaken in the area which included the implementation of a pollinator garden. The Canada 150 Infrastructure Program funding will ensure this work continues and the Display Ponds can be enjoyed by the public for decades to come.
Work on the Waterfowl Display Ponds began in 1971. The Waterfowl Park Committee, working under the Wascana Centre Authority, recognized the need for a facility for captive waterfowl. The Display Ponds would provide a home for captive and injured birds and an opportunity for people to interact with birds up close. For decades, the Display Ponds have served as an outdoor classroom for Regina and area schools, as well as are a popular attraction for the local public and tourists alike.
In 2015 Wascana Centre Authority launched the ‘Bread is Bad for Me’ campaign. The educational campaign focuses on educating the public about the dangerous effects of feeding certain foods like bread and popcorn to geese and ducks. When waterfowl are fed items like bread and popcorn, malnutrition and disease can become an issue, especially in young developing birds. Wascana Centre encourages visitors to keep it to the G's; grains and greens. Items such as barley, wheat, lettuce and spinach will help the birds develop properly.
The Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program is part of Canada 150 Celebrates, the Government of Canada’s celebration of our country’s 150th anniversary of Confederation. The funding is aimed at improving the communities throughout the country. The MacKenzie Art Gallery and the Wascana Racing Canoe Club were also recipients to help upgrade their facilities in Wascana Centre.