Conservation of Crown Wildlife Habitat in BC, 2015-2016
Goals and Objectives
This project will utilize the BC Land Act to first establish Crown wildlife habitat reserves and then garner support to designate Wildlife Management Areas (WMA) via the BC Wildlife Act.
The goals of this project are:
- To complete establishment of 2 new Wildlife Management Areas; 4 new Wildlife Reserves; and make applications to start the process for 3 additional Wildlife Reserves
- To assist JV partners in BC NAWMP Joint Ventures with strategic private land securement opportunities
- To identify BC Priorities for new WMAs
- To monitor and update Crown Land Database
Specific Habitat Products/Results Supported by WHC’s Contributions
The funding support from WHC to be applied in 2015-16 will go towards completing the establishment of two new Wildlife Management Areas (Harrison-Chehalis and Somenos Marsh); four new Wildlife Reserves (Whispering Pines, Boundary Lake, Nanoose Bay Estuary, and Courtenay River Estuary); and applications to initiate three additional Wildlife Reserves (Nicomen Slough, Salmon River Estuary, and Campbell River Estuary).
These sites are comprised of 9,250 acres of wetland habitats (including coastal estuaries and interior wetlands), 5,312 acres of and upland habitat (including riparian and interior and coastal forests).
Benefits to Waterfowl, Wetland-Associated Species, and/or Other Wildlife
The protection of these wetlands will contribute towards abundant and resilient waterfowl populations. The designation process for a WMA requires consultation and support from public society members. Through the consultations, WMA’s build awareness of the multiple uses for these wetlands including hunting, wildlife viewing of all bird life, and other recreational activities along with the provision of ecological services such as water storage, purification, and moderation of flood events.
Relevance to Habitat Planning, Decision Making and/or Management
The project directly influences habitat conservation through Crown land designations (securement) of land over the long term and most in perpetuity. Once secured as a WMA, the lands are managed through BC Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations which can access land management funding through the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation. Indirectly, the projects contribute to land use planning through internal government planning as well as through public consultation process that engages local government. The CLSPP compliments acquisition projects of government and NGO’s because in several areas, the WMA’s are designated on Crown lands that are adjacent to acquired parcels of land creating contiguous blocks of conservation lands. Over 10 existing WMAs include The Nature Trust of BC lands leased to FLNRO and 9 proposed or pending WMAs and/or wildlife reserves will include TNTBC lands.
The project will be carried out throughout the province of BC including areas of Coastal Lowlands, Riparian Woodland corridors, Interior Wetlands, and Boreal Forest. Primarily estuaries, wetlands, and riparian habitat corridors comprise the majority of the habitat to be conserved, often adjacent to private lands secured through the Joint Venture partners.
For more information on this project, please contact Marian Adair, Habitat Ecologist, North Vancouver, BC.