Good Neighbours Project Wins HCTF Silver Award

The Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation was pleased to present the Habitat Acquisition Trust (HAT) with a Silver Award for the Good Neighbours Project at their AGM last Wednesday. HAT is a land trust operating in Greater Victoria that aims to help citizens better understand and care for habitats within the region. Their Good Neighbours program assists property owners in meeting their land use needs while simultaneously protecting some of Canada’s rarest habitats. Each year, HAT focuses its outreach services on a different region of Capital Regional District. Their engagement of neighbours and students in science-based demonstration projects benefits local ecosystems and creates lasting networks within communities. The HCTF Silver Award is just the latest accolade for Good Neighbours Program - it has also won a CRD Ecostar Award . For more information on this program and how you can become involved, visit HAT’s website      

Contract Extensions

Project Leaders: the window to submit Contract Extension Request Forms is now open. If you do not foresee being able complete the activities covered under your 2013-14 grant agreement by March 31, 2014, you will need to submit a request for a contract extension. Request forms can be emailed to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , and must be submitted by the February 15, 2014 deadline . Additional information about Contract Extensions can be found on the  enhancement grant management page .

The Mysterious Wolverine

Planning to be in Victoria next Wednesday? Join the Habitat Acquisition Trust (HAT) for their annual general meeting, which will include a special presentation by wildlife biologist Eric Lofroth on the wild & wonderful wolverine. Learn more about the lives of these mysterious icons of BC’s wilderness, who have only recently been discovered to inhabit the Great Bear Rainforest .  Eric has been researching this solitary species for many years, including being the lead on an HCTF-funded project examining wolverine distribution, habitat and foraging behavior in the North Cascade Ranges.   The Habitat Acquisition Trust is a non-profit land trust in the capital region. They have received multiple HCTF grants for their projects promoting positive land use practices and natural area stewardship.   HAT’s AGM begins at 7pm on Wednesday, January 22 nd at the Swan Lake Nature Sanctuary Nature House . Everyone is welcome. You can find out more details on both the meeting and wolverine presentation by visiting HAT’s website .

Video: Roosevelt Elk Recovery Project

Today’s Globe and Mail features the following video of the HCTF-funded Coastal Mainland Roosevelt Elk Recovery and Management Project. This highly successful project relocates Roosevelt Elk from areas along the Sunshine Coast Highway to remote watersheds in southwestern British Columbia where the species was historically found.   By the 1900s, the number of Roosevelt Elk in BC had been severely reduced, and they were all but eliminated from the southern mainland coast. Since 1997, HCTF has provided approximately $750,000 to fund the translocation (and monitoring) of over 450 elk to 22 different mainland locations. The resulting population from these transfers is estimated to be 1,400 animals. The restoration of this big game species to its former habitats not only has ecological benefits, established populations resulting from translocations also provide some limited-entry hunting opportunities, which benefit local First Nations, resident and non-resident hunters. To find out more about the Coastal Mainland Roosevelt Elk Recovery and Management Project, visit the following links:   Up Close with Roosevelt Elk : YouTube Video of Canada in the Rough episode featuring project leader Daryl Reynolds darting and collaring a bull Roosevelt elk to collect information on their habitats (helicopter action starts at 9:32). Elk Herds Repopulate Sea...
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Bringing Back the Sharpie

For an animal whose survival depends on being inconspicuous, the Sharp-tailed Grouse has developed quite a following. That’s because  once a year, the males of this cryptically coloured species gather together for a dramatic display of dueling and dancing. If you've never seen these birds in action, it’s worth a look: though an increasingly rare sight in the wild, a quick Google search will turn up multiple clips of Sharp-tails stomping, vibrating, clucking and chirping at each other, all part of a dance of dominance designed to capture the attention of Sharp-tailed hens.  Sharp-tailed Grouse Lek in Snow (HD) from Dawson Dunning on Vimeo . Starting at dawn, the males gather to establish territories on the dancing grounds, known as leks. Birds return to these sites year after year to perform their animated mating ritual , which  provides an excellent opportunity for researchers to do bird counts to determine if their populations are changing - or if they've disappeared. When it was first described by Lewis and Clark in the early 1800s, the Columbian Sharp-tailed Grouse was considered to be the most prolific game bird in the Northwest. Historically, the Columbian subspecies of Sharp-tail was found across nine of the...
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