HCTF Provides Half a Million for Elkink Ranch Acquisition

HCTF Provides Half a Million for Elkink Ranch Acquisition
HCTF has recently committed $500,000 to the acquisition of the South Block of Elkink Ranc h by the Nature Conservancy of Canada. This connective property will increase the Sage and Sparrow Conservation Area to over 3,100 acres of continuous South Okanagan grassland habitat, and will also bridge the current gap between the Chopaka East and Kilpoola components of the South Okanagan Grasslands Protected Area. As one of Canada's most endangered ecosystems, these grasslands provide critical habitat for a diverse range of amphibian, reptile, bird and mammal species, some which occur nowhere else in the world. Resident species-at-risk include Lewis's woodpecker , grasshopper sparrow , and burrowing owl . Together, the properties also provide an important wildlife migration corridor. In accordance with the Foundation's goal of encouraging public use and enjoyment of BC's fish, wildlife and habitats, the acquired lands will be made publically accessible, providing recreational opportunities compatible with maintaining the property's conservation values. These opportunities include non-motorized access to the property for hunting. HCTF is pleased to have contributed to NCC's campaign to secure this important piece of grassland habitat, and sees Elkink South Block as a valuable addition to the Foundation's many existing conservation investments in the South...
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HCTF Board Changes

HCTF Board Changes
Changes are afoot at the HCTF Board, with the Board saying farewell to three departing Board members and welcoming the recent appointments of Madeline Maley (appointed by the Province of BC) and Michael Green (appointed by the BC Trappers Association). Madeline and Mike replace Andrew Wilson and Dave Hatler respectively, both of whom stepped down from the Board at the beginning of April. More recently, we say a fond farewell to Al Martin, whose term on the Board expired in mid May, 2013. All of the departing Board members have long histories of leadership and commitment in the conservation field, and we wish them all the best in future endeavors. New Appointees Madeline is the Executive Director Regional Operations South Area for the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations. Madeline joined the Ministry of Forests and Range in 1995 as a forester working on Vancouver Island, having previously worked in Ontario as a consultant for First Nations and the forest industry as well as having worked for the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. Madeline moved to Kamloops in 2003 as an Operations Manager, Compliance and Enforcement, Stewardship and Corporate Services. In 2007, Madeline moved to the Southern Interior...
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A Little Water Goes a Long Way

A Little Water Goes a Long Way
The six-inch concrete sill at the outlet of Westwood Lake near Nanaimo didn’t look like much, but when James Craig, BC Conservation Foundation fisheries biologist showed HCTF staff the other end of the lake – we were impressed! The additional water storage in the lake as a result of the sill construction was just enough to maintain year-round flows in the outlet stream that was previously dry most of the year. It now has the potential of supporting cutthroat trout and coho salmon. This is the third HCTF project evaluation that HCTF staff have carried out this spring. East Coast Vancouver Island Water Storage Feasibility was a 5-year project completed in 2011-12. Project leader James Craig explained the goal of the project was to look at streams and lakes at various sites on the east coast of Vancouver Island to determine how to improve flows for fish habitat. Most of the work was behind the scenes, working with landowners, water licensees, local governments and other stakeholders to resolve the administrative and regulatory barriers to ensure there is enough water for fish. This kind of project takes diplomacy and perseverance on top of the fisheries expertise – thank you, James, for...
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Silver Award Winners Recognized at BC Nature AGM

Silver Award Winners Recognized at BC Nature AGM
Two outstanding HCTF projects were recognized on May 4th at the BC Nature AGM. YNC’s Nature Clubs Project and Bird Studies Canada’s BC Breeding Bird Atlas project were presented with HCTF Silver Awards for their contribution to conservation in BC. The Nature Club’s project connects children with the outdoors by encouraging natural discovery by providing engaging activities, events and resources, including explorer days led by local naturalists, NatureWILD Magazine, and the Action Awards program. The Silver Award was presented to the YNC as the top project in the Stewardship category, and was accepted by YNC’s Executive Director Kristine Webber. Read more about the Nature Club’s Project in our Project Profiles>> The Breeding Bird Atlas project unites the wildlife-watching community with management agencies, biologists, guide-outfitters, industry, academics and naturalist organizations to fill knowledge gaps critical to the conservation of this province’s breeding birds. This project was the Silver Award winner in the wildlife category, and was accepted by Anne Murray, the BC Nature representative on the Atlas Steering Committee and Christopher Di Corrado, BC Breeding Bird Atlas Coordinator. The Silver Awards were created back in 2006 by HCTF’s Board of Directors in celebration of the Foundation’s 25th anniversary, and in recognition...
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Man of the Year

Man of the Year
Saturday, April 27th was a very special day when one Roderick Sterling Silver was the deserving recipient of the BC Wildlife Federation ’s Barsby Trophy. The trophy is the greatest honour the BCWF can bestow on an individual for their outstanding contribution to conservation in British Columbia over many years. Rod’s nomination was supported by many conservation leaders from across BC who personally attested to his quiet but pervasive influence in many historical and ongoing projects that continue to benefit BC’s fish and wildlife heritage, not least of which were his years as the Manager of the then Habitat Conservation Trust Fund and, since his retirement, in his current role as a Director of the Nature Trust of British Columbia. Rod’s name has been added to a long list of previous winners – and he’s in very good company. Past Barsby Trophy winners include Ian McTaggart-Cowan , Bert Brink , Otto Langer, Peter Larkin, Ralph Shaw, Don Robinson and many more. Congratulations Rod! Photo: Rod Silver (left) fresh from a well deserved holiday in the sun receives the Barsby Trophy from Ed Mankelow, Past President of the BC Wildlife Federation (and himself a past winner of the Barsby Trophy).  ...
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