Salmon River Success

Salmon River Success
The Nature Trust of British Columbia has announced the purchase of 165 acres in the Salmon River estuary near Campbell River on Vancouver Island. This new acquisition is connected to conservation lands previously secured by The Nature Trust and its partners over the past four decades. “Like many Nature Trust projects, conservation of the Salmon River estuary has been years in the making,” said Dr. Jasper Lament, CEO of The Nature Trust of BC. “This business takes time and patience. We are very grateful to our conservation partners and to the many people who helped make this deal possible.” Major funding was provided by the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation and the Fish & Wildlife Compensation Program. Additional support was provided by the Campbell River Salmon Foundation, Barnet Rifle Club, Steelhead Society of BC, Kingfishers Rod & Gun Club, Ducks Unlimited Canada, Totem Fly Fishers, Parksville-Qualicum Fish & Game Association, BC Federation of Fly Fishers, and individual donors from across BC. “The Salmon River project is the latest purchase of conservation land made possible through the contributions of the anglers, hunters, guide outfitters and trappers of BC,” said Brian Springinotic, CEO of the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation. “The securement of this...
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HCTF Takes a Look at the Kitimat River Cutthroat Trout Project

HCTF Takes a Look at the Kitimat River Cutthroat Trout Project
As part of our evaluation program to ensure HCTF funds are benefiting fish and wildlife conservation, HCTF staff regularly visit project leaders to get an in-depth look at their projects – both on paper (financials) and on the ground. In early June, HCTF staff biologist Lynne Bonner and financial officer Katelynn Sander travelled to Terrace to meet with Regional Fisheries Biologist Jeff Lough to learn about his project Kitimat River Cutthroat Trout Behavioral Assessments. The following is their account of the evaluation:   The Kitimat River drains a large coastal watershed and discharges into the head of Douglas Channel at the town of Kitimat . It is a high priority for coastal cutthroat trout because of impacts from multiple human activities in the watershed. It also supports a popular fishery for both local and visiting anglers and the angling effort is significant. Prior to this study, information on the coastal cutthroat population was limited and anecdotal. This project aimed to investigate the patterns and behavior of coastal cutthroat, in an effort to understand how best to keep the populations healthy and sustained. In a joint radio telemetry and genetic analyses study with the University of Northern BC (UNBC), key cutthroat...
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Fraser River Sturgeon Project Featured on CBC

Fraser River Sturgeon Project Featured on CBC
CBC put together some great coverage of an HCTF-funded project that is tracking sturgeon in the Lower Fraser River. Project leader Erin Stoddard, dubbed the “sturgeon surgeon”, implants acoustical tags in these giant, prehistoric fish so that scientists can learn more about their movements and spawning sites, and can use this information to suggest policy changes that will protect them. You can read the CBC article and watch the videos here :   The Lower Fraser White Sturgeon Telemetry Study is in its second year of funding from HCTF, and also receives in-kind support from the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations and the Fraser River Sturgeon Conservation Society.  
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Go Fish for Free in BC this Father's Day Weekend

Go Fish for Free in BC this Father's Day Weekend
If you’ve ever considered giving fishing a try, mark June 19 th -21 st in your calendar. Father’s Day weekend is also the 16 th annual BC Family Fishing Weekend, when BC residents can fish licence-free in many of the Province’s fresh and tidal waters. Close to fifty community fishing events will take place over the weekend, including free learn-to-fish sessions for beginners and loner rods and tackle. “These events offer a great opportunity to learn about how to fish in a fun and supported environment,” Michele Dusterhoft, President of the Family Fishing Society of BC. “The hundreds of volunteers who organize and participate in these events are passionate about fishing and about sharing their love of the sport with kids and families. They are keen to share what makes fishing such a great pastime.” The Family Fishing Society estimates that 25,000 British Columbians participate in Family Fishing Weekend each year, with approximately 17,000 of them attending one of the community events. Funding for the events comes from a number of sources, including grants from the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation (HCTF), Pacific Salmon Foundation and the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC. HCTF CEO Brian Springinotic says the Foundation supports Family...
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Got Bats?

Got Bats?
There’s still time to participate in the BC Bat Watch program this summer. Bat Watch is a citizen science program that annually monitors bat roost sites in BC. Abandoned houses, barns, church steeples –even occupied structures – can provide summer homes for female bats and their young. Monitoring these “maternity colonies” helps biologists figure out how regional bat populations are doing from year to year. With the recent emergence of White-nose Syndrome in North America, monitoring these colonies is more important than ever. HCTF is proud to support this program through a grant to the BC Conservation Foundation (project 0-476). The “Got Bats” initiative is encouraging anyone who knows of a local bat roost to participate as a bat counter. The counts themselves are pretty simple: you’ll need to arrive at the roost at sunset, and tally the bats on a data sheet as they fly out for their nightly insect-eating. Ideally, participants will be available to conduct four bat counts per summer ‐ two between June 1 and 21 (before pups can fly) and two more between July 21 and August 15 (when pups are flying and exiting the roost). Completing all four bat counts will best allow biologists...
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