Celebrating Hunting Heritage and Conservation in The Land Between, 2014-15
Goals and Objectives
The Land Between Organization in partnership with the Living History Multimedia (LHMA) and with support from partners of landowners, rod and gun clubs, First Nations, Ministry of Natural Resources District Offices; Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters and Ducks Unlimited Canada, will showcase and celebrate Hunting Heritage and Conservation in a significantly rich and diverse region in Ontario, by recording and broadcasting through television partners including TVO and at local venues across the region, a 50 minute HD documentary. The film will express the unique hunting heritage that has evolved since time immemorial in this landscape, and the consequent relationships of this cultural practice to the conservation of the special and ecologically diverse region across central Ontario, known as The Land Between.
The Land Between extends from Georgian Bay to Kingston, skirting the Algonquin Dome and is an ecotone; a transition area between the Canadian Shield and St. Lawrence Lowlands. It therefore has unparalleled diversity as a meeting ground for species from north and south, such as the moose and deer, black bear and woodchuck, wolf and cottontail, pickerel frog and chorus frog, walleye and northern pike. The Land Between also has the only rock barrens in the province and the highest percentage of shorelines due to the considerable wealth of wetlands, lakes and rivers here. The region is largely intact primary natural cover, extensive land holdings, parks and reserves. However, development pressure is increasing rapidly from cottage and retirement home development, so that shoreline alterations, increasing footprints, along with an urban aesthetic and ethic are reducing habitat richness, connectivity, and function; in turn affecting biodiversity, species richness and therefore, hunting and angling.
Building on past successes of awareness and stewardship resulting from the TVO and locally broadcast Land Between documentary, this project advances understanding of the significant ecology and role of hunting and angling in habitat stewardship and sustainable economic development. It further advances the capacity for conservation through illustrating the role of wetlands and associated habitats in biodiversity; through providing a platform and venues for conservation groups to educate and deliver applied stewardship programs; and finally by raising the voice of hunters as key stakeholders and conservationists in these communities.
Purpose and Expected Outcomes
The project will immediately reach groups that are key to conserving the Land Between, such as urban and new settlers, landowners, and planning authorities within the region and across south and central Ontario. The film will combine 2D and 3D animations; on-the-ground interviews with hunters, anglers, and First Nations Knowledge Keepers; and archival film, photographs, and paintings into a modern, accessible and palatable package to engage and educate – creating new and extensive awareness and appreciation of the importance of the ecology and habitats of the region, and of the role and knowledge of hunters and anglers in conservation.
The project provides a platform to increase the capacity of partners and conservation agencies, such as: The Land Between, Ducks Unlimited Canada, Ontario Federation of Hunters and Anglers, and local groups, to deliver applied habitat conservation.
Finally, the documentary will gather and share historic accounts of hunters and contrast these stories with current hunting practices and harvests, helping biologists and stakeholders to understand the state of the resource, and inspiring immediate action.
Relevance to Habitat Planning, Decision Making and/or Management
This project, like our previous film and collaborative projects, employs a community-based and collaborative model for engagement, participation, and delivery. We assemble a large network of interested and like-minded partners to ensure efficiencies, collective resources and no duplication of efforts – and to provide a comprehensive, accurate and compelling story.
Taking cues from the collaborative community theatre approach, we employ a community-focused production model to create a work that is as inclusive as possible. Volunteer guidance and acting both add value to our work and promote an active interest in local history. By “engaging and employing” the community and landowners, we extend their interest and ultimately the impact – “supported by and made by the people.”
We also use the most current production equipment to create HD+ content, 2D and 3D graphics and effects, and Blu-Ray and web-ready content that is appealing to all audiences. The resulting product is accessible and immediately integrated into the consciousness of both young and old; expert and layman. Our project will create a suite of media where no previous comprehensive chronicle of hunting heritage and related conservation exists.
Finally, messaging to communicate the state of the resource, cultural practices, best practices, stewardship needs, and the linkages of the ecosystem and habitats to both the health and welfare of humans – is entirely lacking in this region. Until now, no previous broad based knowledge of the region and its amenities and functions has been communicated.
The Land Between extends from Georgian Bay to Kingston, skirting the Algonquin Dome and is an Eco tone; a transition area between the Canadian Shield and St. Lawrence Lowlands (ON)
For more information on this project, please contact Leora Berman, Managing Director, The Land Between, Haliburton, Ontario.