Conservation of Priority Wetland and Upland Habitat on Salt Spring Island 2013-2014

Final Report: Conservation of Priority Wetland and Upland Habitat on Salt Spring Island, 2013-2014

Goals and Objectives

The purpose of this project is to protect, conserve, restore and enhance wetland and/or upland habitat in priority conservation areas on Salt Spring Island.

Our project contributes to the conservation, restoration, and/or enhancement of wildlife habitat by:

  • increasing the amount of protected lands with wetland or upland habitat via covenant, acquisition or donation;
  • increasing landowner awareness of the importance of wetlands and upland habitat;
  • providing landowners with recommendations for protecting or enhancing wetland/upland habitat for game birds;
  • increasing landowner stewardship agreements and stewardship activities on priority properties;
  • providing long-term conservation options and tax benefit information to landowners of priority habitat;
  • ensuring compliance with covenant and Management Plan restrictions on covenant and Nature Reserve lands;
  • monitoring the wetland and upland habitat restoration work completed in the Alvin Indridson Nature Reserve;
  • Enhancing wetland or upland habitat on SSIC Nature Reserves;
  • Building relationships and increasing multi-jurisdictional wetland and upland habitat conservation planning with partner conservation organizations on a local, regional, provincial and national level.

Specific Habitat Products/Results Supported by WHC’s Contributions

-legal protection of land on up to 3 properties (up to 198 acres/80 hectares) of lake, wetland, shoreline or upland habitat

-enhancement of upland habitat in up to 2 key locations

-restoration of lake shoreline habitat on up to 7 properties

-signed Stewardship Agreements on up to 5 properties with wetland and/or upland habitat

-ensure compliance of conservation covenants on up to 13 properties with wetland, shoreline, and/or upland habitat (totaling 754 acres/305 hectares)

-increase public awareness of importance of wetlands, stewardship and/or wetland-associated species (local newspaper circ. 4,000)

-increase effectiveness in habitat conservation planning at a local, regional and national level with partner organizations

Benefits to Waterfowl, Wetlands-Associated Species, and/or Other Wildlife

The benefits of this project to waterfowl, wetland-associated species and migratory game bids include:

-protection, conservation, restoration and enhancement of priority wetland and upland habitat;

-increased knowledge about these species from surveys and monitoring to build a case for conservation on priority lands;

-increased landowner awareness about the importance of land stewardship and conservation;

-increased landowner engagement in stewardship and conservation activities on priority wetland and upland habitat;

-increased effectiveness at conservation planning for wetland and upland habitats on a regional and provincial scale with partner conservation organizations, and

-increased public awareness about the habitat requirements of waterfowl, wetland-associated species and game birds.

Relevance to Habitat Planning, Decision Making and/or Management

SSIC participates in and reports to Recovery Teams for several Species At Risk on Salt Spring, involves different levels of government where applicable in project activities, and provides recommendations and data to the Islands Trust, BC Parks, and SS Parks and Recreation Commission in their management of protected areas and parks.

Direct Influences:

  • increased land protected through Stewardship Agreements with private landowners.
  • increased land protected through donation, acquisition or conservation covenant by landowners.
  • increased wetland and upland habitat restored and enhanced through stewardship activities such as invasive species removal and native tree planting.

Indirect Influences

  • recommendations provided to Cusheon Lake Stewardship Committee on management of sensitive ecosystems including wetland and upland habitat.
  • data and recommendations provided to BC Parks to support the transfer of ecologically significant lakeshore and upland habitat in Cusheon Lake Watershed from Crown Land to Ecological Reserve to increase protection of watershed ecosystem services and functions such as water quality, erosion control, and infiltration, and to maintain significant quality habitat for waterfowl and migratory game bird species.
  • increased effectiveness at conservation planning for wetland and upland habitats on a regional and provincial scale with partner conservation organizations.

Project Location

Salt Spring Island, within the Capital Regional District and Islands Trust Area, British Columbia.

Project Contact

For more information on this project, please contact Christine Torgrimson, Executive Director, Salt Spring Island
Conservancy, Salt Spring, B.C.