aura Levitsky of Chilliwack, British Columbia joins some of Canada’s most prestigious nature artists featured in Ducks Unlimited Canada’s (DUC) 2018 National
Art Portfolio. By donating her artwork to DUC, Levitsky is
helping raise important funds for wetland conservation.
Levitsky’s painting, The Suitors, is one of 11 pieces
selected from hundreds of submissions from artists across the
country. Levitsky was also named DUC’s 2018 Waterfowl Stamp and
“The National Art Portfolio is a unique program that not only
promotes our country’s outstanding nature artists, but the
growing need to conserve the natural areas that inspire their
work,” says Michaela Bell, DUC’s national manager of retail
Paintings selected for DUC’s
National Art Portfolio are made into high-quality prints for use
in DUC’s fundraising initiatives. Money raised supports DUC’s
wetland conservation work, scientific research and education
programs. Wetlands are some of the most important ecosystems on
the planet. They naturally clean water, prevent floods and
droughts, and help mitigate the effects of climate change by
holding large amounts of carbon.
“DUC has a strong relationship with Canadian artists like Laura
Levitsky,” says Bell. “I’m confident her painting will be very
successful in helping us raise the money we need to continue our
wetland conservation work.”
Levitsky’s painting The Suitors features three wood ducks – some
of North America’s most striking and colourful waterfowl
species. She says she was attracted to the challenge of
capturing their beauty and elegance in a painting. “They are
truly amazing in the light with all the colours changing with
every move they make.”
Levitsky's "The Suitors" was chosen from hundreds of entries.
Artwork by Laura Levitsky and
other top Canadian nature artists are being sold at DUC
community fundraising events, on art auction easels in
businesses across the country and online at
In many Canadian cities, nature
can be hard to find. But natural habitats like wetlands that
exist amid the concrete and pavement are little patches of gold.
They're extremely valuable – and they're worth saving.
Tomorrow is World Wetlands Day. Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC) is
joining conservation organizations from around the globe to
shine a spotlight on the role wetlands play in a sustainable
urban future. The problem is, wetlands are often seen as
wastelands. As cities expand and demand for land increases,
these shallow marshy areas are often filled in or built upon to
make room for housing and other development.
"Urban wetlands are areas of high productivity and
biodiversity," says Karla Guyn, chief executive officer for
Ducks Unlimited Canada. "Protecting them is essential to the
long-term health and prosperity of our communities. Not only do
wetlands provide a beautiful, natural focal point within
neighbourhoods, they improve air and water quality. They also
guard against floods, help prevent droughts and store carbon."
Despite today's announcement that Environment and Climate Change
Canada's support for the important National Wetland Conservation
Fund is ending prematurely, conserving wetlands and harnessing
their natural power is something that's gaining ground in
Canada. The use of natural solutions as part of green
infrastructure programming is becoming more popular with
governments and city planners as they strive to make their
communities more resilient and environmentally sustainable.
Green infrastructure, which includes protected areas, vegetation
and wetlands, takes the place of traditional built
infrastructure like dry dams or water treatment systems. It's
building with nature instead of non-renewable resources.
"While funding through the National Wetland Conservation Fund
has ended, we're encouraged that more urban and rural
municipalities are taking a proactive approach to their planning
by seeking out ways to include natural habitat as development
proceeds," says Guyn.
DUC is working with cities like Moncton, N.B., Edmonton, Alta.,
as well as Winnipeg and Brandon, Man. to construct naturalized
stormwater retention ponds. Wetland-like in appearance and
function, these basins incorporate natural biological processes
to filter and store water.
Cities like these are setting important examples for others to
follow. Despite how important wetland conservation is to our
communities, wetlands are under threat. Up to 80 acres (32
hectares) are lost every day in settled areas of Canada. This is
the equivalent of about 45 soccer fields every 24 hours.
"Canada is home to 25 per cent of the world's wetlands," says
Guyn. "And many of them are found in highly populated areas.
World Wetlands Day reminds all Canadians of the critical role
wetlands play in our lives – and the need to conserve them."
Wetlands are some of Canada's most valuable real estate that
hold the key to making our cities more livable. Here's how:
Flood prevention: Wetlands act as sponges that capture, store
and slowly release water over a long period of time. In coastal
communities, saltmarshes work as a buffer against storm surges.
Clean water: Wetlands naturally filter harmful nutrients and
pollutants from water.
Fight climate change: Wetlands store carbon and keep it from
being released into the atmosphere as greenhouse gas.
Promote healthy, happy lifestyles: Wetlands provide residents
with green spaces where they can recreate and enjoy diverse
plant and animal life.
About World Wetlands Day: February 2nd marks the adoption of the
Convention of Wetlands, which took place in 1971 in the Iranian
city of Ramsar. It's a treaty negotiated by countries and
non-governmental organizations that provides the framework for
the conservation and wise use of wetlands. Canada is one of the
treaty's contracting parties and currently has 37 sites
designated as Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar
About Ducks Unlimited Canada: Ducks Unlimited Canada (DUC) is
the leader in wetland conservation. A registered charity, DUC
partners with government, industry, non-profit organizations and
landowners to conserve wetlands that are critical to waterfowl,
wildlife and the environment.
SOURCE DUCKS UNLIMITED CANADA