Conservation in the Kootenays
Monthly eNews
May 2021
Trendy Tools
Featuring profiles from the Stewardship Solutions Online Toolkit
If you are a landowner with ecologically significant land, you may be interested in conserving its biodiversity and wildlife habitat values for future generations by selling or donating your property for conservation.

KCP Conservation Action Forums
91% of Priority Actions achieved or underway
KCP’s Conservation Action Forums identify shared priority actions that will contribute to maintaining healthy fish and wildlife populations and ecological functions in the region. The Action Forums bring together partners from a particular neighbourhood where there is local interest and leadership to learn from the latest science in the region to inform the development of shared action priorities. KCP is pleased to report that as of March 31, 2021, of the 32 Priority Actions identified across the first five forums for the Slocan Lake Watershed, Columbia Valley, Lower Columbia, Elk Valley and Creston (excluding the recent Golden forum in November 2020), 29 were either completed or were actively being pursued – 91%!

Local Conservation Funds
2021 projects announced: CVLCF list corrected
Last month we announced the projects that are receiving financial support from the Columbia Valley Local Conservation Fund (CVLCF) and the Kootenay Lake Local Conservation Fund (KLLCF). The detailed list of CVLCF projects contained some errors which we've since corrected. Please see the revised list below.
Click here for the CVLCF announcement and here for the detailed list of CVLCF projects.
Click here for the KLLCF announcement and here for the detailed list of KLLCF projects.

Stewardship Solutions Promotion Package
Help spread the word about Kootenays' amazing stewardship services
KCP has created a resource page full of promotional tools for use on websites, in newsletters, on social media and more to help promote the Stewardship Solutions Toolkit. Download a poster, include a pre-written summary in your newsletter, copy and paste pre-written social media posts and download accompanying images — it's all there! We've recently added a short "how-to" video that explains how to easily navigate the website. If you've checked out this toolkit before, we encourage you to check it out again because new services and information are being added all the time. 

Columbia Valley Local Conservation Fund
Technical Review Committee Member
The Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) in partnership with the Kootenay Conservation Program (KCP) are seeking qualified members for the Columbia Valley Local Conservation Fund (CVLCF) Technical Review Committee (TRC). The role of the TRC is to make recommendations on allocating annual funding for conservation projects for the area from Canal Flats to Spillimacheen. Applications will be received on an ongoing basis.
B.C. Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy
Seeking input in a ‘species at risk recovery documents’ survey
The B.C. Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy is interested in hearing about experiences with B.C. species at risk recovery documents to gather data to improve the species at risk program. The feedback will provide data-driven insight into effectively transferring and packaging information on species at risk recovery. This survey is an initial step in reviewing how species at risk recovery documents are developed, including making space for Indigenous review, perspectives, and knowledge, where possible and applicable. This survey will take approximately 10 minutes to complete and the link will be open until Monday, May 10.

Fish & Wildlife Compensation Program
43 Columbia Region projects announced for 2021–2022
The Fish & Wildlife Compensation Program Columbia Region board approved $5.7 million for 43 projects in 2021-2022. The 11 fish and 32 wildlife projects will be delivered by Indigenous groups, agencies, stewardship groups, consultants, and others. Together, the projects will research and monitor fish and wildlife populations, improve habitat, and help species of conservation concern, such as bull trout, bighorn sheep, and more.

Mountain National Parks
Engagement on draft park management plans is now open
Join the conversation! From April 14 until July 7, you're invited to provide feedback on the draft park management plans for Banff, Jasper, Waterton Lakes, Yoho, Kootenay, Mount Revelstoke and Glacier national parks. All Canadians are invited to share their views on these plans. The results of this engagement phase will help to finalize the management plans, after which they will be approved and tabled in Parliament and used to guide the overall direction of park management for the next ten years.

Municipal Natural Assets Initiative
Report: Toward natural asset management in Kootenays
Six local governments in the Kootenays region of British Columbia just completed preliminary natural asset inventories with MNAI, thus taking their first critical step towards natural asset management. The local governments are the Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK), Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK), Regional District of Kootenay Boundary (RDKB), City of Cranbrook, Town of Golden, and the City of Rossland, with support from Selkirk College. 

Columbia Wetlands Stewardship Partners
Volunteers wanted to monitor Western Painted Turtles in the Columbia Valley
Columbia Wetlands Stewardship Partners are looking for volunteers to help monitor Western Painted Turtles at their new basking logs in Radium Hot Springs at the mill pond and at Dorothy Lake in Invermere this season. Click here for the poster.
To volunteer please email cvpaintedturtle@gmail.com.

Rocky Mountain Trench Ecosystem Restoration Program
20 years of ER Monitoring Data available online
Thompson Rivers University has compiled 20 years of data from 11 intensive monitoring plots into a report. This ecosystem restoration monitoring data is critical to the Ecosystem Restoration program; as a new discipline it has to check its projects to make sure the goals of an improved healthier ecosystem are met. Monitoring also gives the program a chance to fine tune and improve its operations. The RMTERP monitoring protocols are based on draft plans from the Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program and this strategy was standardised specifically for the Rocky Mountain Trench ER program in 2002.

Wildsight & Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative
Webinar recording available: Protecting the Land that Sustains Us
Hear from researchers on the ground of Canada’s nature protection measures. Learn how mapping for human benefits helps our country reach our land conservation goals in this webinar co-hosted by Wildsight and Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative.

Columbia Basin Trust
Climate Source Resource Expands
New environmental and climate data plus new digital tools are available on the Columbia Basin Climate Source website. The website is a resource for Basin and Boundary communities to access reliable information on the region’s climate, possible future impacts to the environment and communities, and how people and organizations can proactively respond. The Climate Data Tool on the website has been enhanced to improve the presentation of data for over 40 climate variables in an easy-to-use format. Through data, videos, maps and more, the website offers information to help users understand the data and make better informed decisions locally.

Rocky Trench Ecosystem Restoration Program
Prescribed burn planned in TaTa Creek area
The Rocky Trench Ecosystem Restoration Program in conjunction with the BC Wildfire Services and the Rocky Mountain Trench Natural Resources Society are planning to conduct a prescribed burn in the TaTa Creek area between April 1st - May 10th, 2021 — weather and burning conditions permitting. Prescribed burns are being conducted for ecosystem restoration purposes and will occur on the Old Kimberley Airport pasture southeast of the TaTa Creek community. The Program was also planning to conduct a prescribed burn in the Premier Lake area between April 9th - April 30th, 2021, weather and burning conditions permitting.
No Mow May
May 1-31, Your Lawn
Choose NOT to mow your lawn to allow wildflowers to grow for the bees. Flowers in your yard can provide vital pollen and nectar for bees and other pollinators. Download the Black & White poster (or make your own) to put in your window to tell your neighbours why you aren’t mowing your lawn in May. Enter the colouring contest by posting a picture of your No Mow May – poster (homemade or printed)to the event. Winners will be drawn on June 1.

Water Testing Resources & Equipment for Educators
May 4, Online
Join Water Rangers’ Laura Gilbert (Community & Research Coordinator) and Juno Garrah (Environmental Education Coordinator) to learn about their water education resources. These include testing kits, downloadable activity sheets, their brand new teacher’s guide, and more.
Water Rangers builds the tools to help classrooms, citizens and scientists easily record and analyze water data so that they can use the data to learn about problems, share discoveries and engage with their communities. Hosted by the CBEEN Outdoor Learning Store & Partners.

CBT Ecosystem Enhancement Program Workshops
May 4 or May 6, Online
Join the Columbia Basin Trust for an ecosystem enhancement project idea workshop: review the process for the fifth year of the Ecosystem Enhancement Program and collaborate and share ideas for potential projects and partnerships from across the Basin. Join us April 29, May 4 or May 6. Registrants will be emailed information and asked to provide input in advance of the workshop to assist in workshop discussions.

CSISS Invasive Plant ID and Management Workshop: Trails and Recreation Areas Focus
May 5, Online
Participants will learn to identify key invasive plants that are often found along trails and in recreation areas in the Columbia Shuswap region. This workshop is especially applicable to trail stewardship groups, park and recreation area users, Indigenous Peoples, trail builders, and trail users of all kinds! Topics covered include invasive plant identification, best management practices for reducing the spread of invasive plants, control options and reporting. Will run from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. PT.

Teaching Kids and Teens about Climate Change
May 6, Online
Teaching climate change to young learners is a balancing act. How can we lead explorations of difficult truths without overwhelming young minds and further exacerbating eco-anxiety?
Join this interactive workshop where we touch on systems thinking, kinesthetic learning, youth empowerment, solutions-oriented collaboration, and facilitating measurable local change. Hosted by the CBEEN Outdoor Learning Store & Partners.

Creston Valley Bird Fest
May 7-9, Creston
The 2021 Festival is proceeding with consideration to the ongoing pandemic. Check the website for the full festival schedule including Outdoor Events, the Learning to Birdwatch in Creston series, and live webinars from bird experts. As well, keynote speaker John Acorn will be making a virtual presentation. 

International Migratory Bird Day, Interpretive Bird Walks
May 8, Golden
There will be two walks, one in the morning and one in the evening, both starting at Reflection Lake. We have very limited registration and are hoping people will only register for one of the other. Email golden@wildsight.ca to register.

Wings Over the Rockies Nature Festival
May 10-16, Columbia Valley
Due to COVID-19, outdoor in-person events are cancelled for the 2021 Wings Over the Rockies Nature Festival in order to protect the health of our participants, presenters and volunteers. Buyers of these events will be given a full refund. Wings will continue as a virtual festival with 9 pre-recorded and 2 live online presentations as well as a photo contest and online auction. The theme, Inspired by Nature ,recognizes the vital role that outdoors plays in our physical and mental well-being and also that humans have a responsibility to protect these special natural places.

Bringing the Salmon Home Festival
May 10-16, Online
The Bringing the Salmon Home Festival offers a vision, an invitation, and a shared affirmation to work together to bring the salmon home to the upper Columbia River in Canada. Enjoy a week of free online events and join diverse guest speakers including Indigenous leaders, knowledge keepers, artists, writers, nutritionists, chefs and biologists for insightful conversations and presentations. The Opening Welcome on May 10 will involve leaders of the Syilx Okanagan, Ktunaxa and Secwépemc Nations, federal and provincial ministers, and elders and young people to launch this amazing event.

Mother/Daughter Art Show: Birds at Risk & Their Columbia Wetlands Habitat
May 12-June 19, Golden
Taking place at the Art Gallery of Golden, this gallery show is designed to bring attention to an important and biodiverse wetland ecosystem that provides habitat for more than 30 at risk bird species. The display will include various sized paintings of at-risk birds and photographs of their significant habitat (Columbia Wetlands) by Donna Mendes: a Mother, Artist and Designer, and Rachel Darvill: a Daughter, Photographer, and Biologist. Tragically, Donna passed away quite suddenly from breast cancer this past fall, but this show will go on as she had wanted. Before she passed away, Donna expressed that she wanted proceeds from her art work to go towards Wildsight Golden’s ongoing bird conservation efforts. Funds raised from her artwork will go towards building and erecting an artificial nesting structure for at-risk barn swallows (valued at $19,000) and the structure will be named in her honour. 

The Importance of Indigenous Perspectives in Children’s Environmental Inquiry
May 13, Online
Join Haley Higdon of Natural Curiosity to learn about the 2nd edition of their resource, The Importance of Indigenous Perspectives in Children’s Environmental Inquiry. This resource supports a stronger basic awareness of Indigenous perspectives and their importance to environmental education. Hosted by the CBEEN Outdoor Learning Store & Partners.

Scaling Up Camera Trap Surveys to Inform Regional Wildlife Conservation
May 18-20, Online
This conference will address key questions in the development and application of camera trap methods. By showcasing established and emerging case studies, the conference will be a forum for sharing lessons on fundamental topics such as sampling design, data management and analysis, and multi-project collaboration. This Columbia Mountains Institute of Applied Ecology event has been adapted to an online format — registration has re-opened! It will take place via Zoom over three mornings and will feature an incredible line-up of speakers and poster presentations addressing various aspects of camera trapping, and a panel discussion. An adapted workshop will also take place focused on coordination and standardization of key aspects of camera surveys such as sampling design, camera protocols, and data management and analysis.

Pollination Networking for Your Garden
May 19, Online 
Join the Columbia Shuswap Invasive Species Society (CSISS) and guest speakers to learn about how you can support plant-pollinator relationships in your garden. CSISS will be speaking about the PlantWise program, which encourages gardeners to choose non-invasive and native plants for their gardens. Brenda Beckwith and Valerie Huff with the Kootenay Native Plant Society will be presenting Pollination Networking for Your Garden.

CBEEN Spring Celebration of Environmental Education!
May 25, Online
Join together with CBEEN Members & Partners for this short & sweet (30 minute) get together where CBEEN will announce some exciting news and give you the chance to break out into groups to connect with colleagues from around the region. This event will be lieu of CBEEN’s annual awards ceremony – instead, they want to provide recognition for ALL their members and partners who have put in so much this year. As a result, a prize will be given for all attendees.

STREAM Series, Webinar #4 – Indigenous-led STREAM projects
May 27, Online
The purpose of this four-part webinar series hosted by Living Lakes Canada is to introduce the STREAM (Sequencing The Rivers for Environmental Assessment and Monitoring) project to anyone interested in community-based water monitoring. This webinar will feature Indigenous-led, community-based water monitoring programs including the Dene Kaska Guardians, the Blueberry River First Nations and the Environmental Stewardship Initiative. Hosted by Living Lakes Canada.

CSISS Invasive Plant ID and Management Workshop: Invasive Plants with Yellow Flowers
May 27, Online
Participants will learn to identify key invasive plants in the Columbia Shuswap region and implement best management practices in the field to prevent the spread of invasive species. The identification portion of this workshop will focus on high priority invasive plants with yellow flowers, such as leafy spurge, wild parsnip, yellow flag iris and others. This workshop is applicable to stewardship groups, industry, forestry, Indigenous Peoples, municipal and regional staff, landscapers, gardeners, recreationists and other interested individuals. Topics that will be covered include invasive plant identification, best management practices for reducing the spread of invasive species, control options and reporting. Will run from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. PT.
Columbia Basin Watershed Network 2021 CBWN Water Monitoring Fund
Deadline: Intake will close when fully subscribed
The Columbia Basin Watershed Network micro grant is open for applications. The funds are to assist Network member groups to: 1. Replace broken water monitoring equipment and 2. maintain or fix water monitoring equipment that is malfunctioning. To participate in the Fund, a project must be sponsored by a Columbia Basin Watershed Network member group. If you're not already a member, or have any questions, please contact CBWN Coordinator Georgia Peck at cbwn.coordinator@gmail.com

TD Friends of the Environment Foundation Grant
Deadline: July 15
The TD Friends of the Environment Foundation (TD FEF) is a national charity that funds environmental projects across Canada. The Foundation supports a wide range of environmental initiatives, with a primary focus on environmental education and green space programs. Eligible projects include schoolyard greening, park revitalization, community gardens, park programming and citizen science initiatives.

Grassland and Rangeland Enhancement Program
Deadline: Ongoing
If you have an idea that will maintain or enhance grassland resources while meeting conservation, environment and recreation objectives, this program could help support it. This program is delivered by the Kootenay Livestock Association.

Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program Community Engagement Grants
Deadline: Ongoing
Community Engagement Grants are typically $500 to $1,000 and help stewardship groups and others take action to benefit local fish and wildlife.

Columbia Basin Trust Career Internship Program
Deadline: First-come, first-served basis
The Columbia Basin Trust Career Internship Program provides eligible employers with up to 50 per cent of an intern’s salary (up to $25,000 over a seven to 12 month term) for full-time, career-focused positions that lead to permanent employment. Eligible employers are businesses, registered non-profits, municipalities, regional districts and Indigenous organizations within the Columbia Basin Trust region.
Living Lakes Canada
Deputy Director
Reporting to the Executive Director, the Deputy Director will be responsible for directing and managing the activities of Living Lakes Canada (LLC) in accordance with policies, goals, and objectives established by the Executive Director and the Board of Directors. The Deputy Director will ensure the achievement of short- and long-range goals for operations, human resources, financial performance, communications, public relations and growth, and oversee fundraising within the organization to ensure financial health. Preference will be given to applicants who live in British Columbia and specifically in the Columbia Basin. Deadline to apply is May 5.

Stewardship Centre for British Columbia
Outreach and Communications Research Assistant
This position is suited for Environmental Science (including biology, geology, oceanography), Ecological Restoration, Planning, or Environmental Engineering students enrolled in or recently graduated from university. Working from their home office, the selected applicant will gain experience and work with community partners and increase their understanding of environmental and ecological stewardship issues. They will also develop communication, outreach and education skills which are essential to achieving success in the field. Deadline to apply is May 14.

Salmo Watershed Streamkeepers Society
Career Intern
The Salmo Watershed Streamkeepers Society (SWSS) is looking to hire a skilled, keen person to move into the Coordinator position for their group. The SWSS is an accomplished, motivated, community stewardship, charitable, non-profit organization dedicated to conservation, enhancement and the regeneration of species and habitat in our watershed and beyond. Career Intern will work with the SWSS Coordinator to become familiar with, and responsible for directing and managing the activities of the SWSS in accordance with policies, goals, and objectives established by the SWSS multi-stakeholder Watershed Planning Team and our Board of Directors. Position open until filled.

British Columbia Conservation Foundation
WildsafeBC Coordinators (Columbia Valley, Selkirk Purcells)
The WildSafeBC Community Coordinator position is more than just a job; it is a unique opportunity to make a real difference in reducing human-wildlife conflicts where you live. This position requires maturity, self-reliance and the ability to work alone for long periods of time with minimal supervision. Professionalism, commitment and good communication skills are also essential. Positions open until filled.

Ducks Unlimited
Chief Executive Officer, Anywhere in Canada
As CEO, you will lead a nation-wide team of approximately 400 staff and 5,200 volunteers. You will help foster a strong and inclusive work environment where diversity flourishes and all are empowered to showcase their unique backgrounds, skills, experiences and perspectives. Responsible for delivering a $100-million budget, you will oversee all DUC business operations including science, habitat conservation, fundraising, education, communications and marketing as well as political advocacy efforts. Position open until filled.

Columbia Basin Environmental Education Network
Wild Voices Community Educator
Are you a forester or geographer? A biologist or mountain guide? A historian or Indigenous storyteller? Do you have some unique knowledge, skill, or expertise you can share with students? Wild Voices for Kids is a program of the Columbia Basin Environmental Education Network. It is a unique program in the Basin as it enables local specialists to develop programs connected to the local environment and tailored to their area of expertise and passion. Each educator brings their own unique knowledge of environment or natural history, adds their passion for education, and creates classroom or field-based programs that will both captivate students and satisfy the learning objectives of teachers. Community Educator applications and program submissions are assessed for approval bi-annually by the Wild Voices Advisory Committee. Fall intake period closes annually on July 15.

Columbia Valley Local Conservation Fund
Technical Review Committee Member, Columbia Valley Region
The Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) in partnership with the Kootenay Conservation Program (KCP) are seeking qualified members for the Columbia Valley Local Conservation Fund (CVLCF) Technical Review Committee (TRC). The role of the TRC is to make recommendations on allocating annual funding for conservation projects for the area from Canal Flats to Spillimacheen. Applications will be received on an ongoing basis.
For a comprehensive list of up-to-date job postings, check the CBEEN Job & Volunteer Board, an excellent resource for Kootenay conservation career and volunteer opportunities.

Simon Fraser University
Ancient Indigenous forest gardens promote a healthy ecosystem: SFU study
A new study by Simon Fraser University historical ecologists finds that Indigenous-managed forests — cared for as "forest gardens" — contain more biologically and functionally diverse species than surrounding conifer-dominated forests and create important habitat for animals and pollinators. The findings are published in Ecology and Society.

Network for Landscape Conservation
Recording available of webinar about Y2Y’s Conservation Vision
Jodi Hilty, President and Chief Scientist of Y2Y, is the presenter in the webinar “Does Advancing a Large Landscape Vision Lead to Measurable Conservation Advances? 25 Years into the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Vision”. Founded in 1993, the Yellowstone-to-Yukon vision was one of the earliest large landscape conservation visions — an interconnected system of wildlands stretching from Yellowstone to Yukon, harmonizing the needs of people with nature.

Regional District of Central Kootenay
Recording available: Planning 101
Planning is meant to be a collaborative process. The creation of Official Community Plans and Zoning Bylaws require information, feedback and review from the community. This recorded presentation provides information on Planning Tools available in the RDCK including Official Community Plans and Zoning Bylaws. For background on Community Planning, visit the RDCK website here.

A Case for Conservation
KCP brochure promoting private land conservation available
KCP has created the “Case for Conservation” tri-fold brochure, which details 9 different reasons why conserving private land is so crucial to the health of the region’s ecosystems that support a myriad of plant, fish and animal species — many of which are currently rare or endangered or at risk of becoming so. The brochure opens up into an attractive poster that can be easily posted in offices, public spaces and homes. Printed brochures are available for distribution. If you would like copies, please contact KCP Program Manager Juliet Craig at manager@kootenayconservation.ca.

Kootenay Conservation Program
Conservation Resources for our Region
The Kootenay Conservation Program (KCP) helps partners to coordinate and facilitate conservation efforts on private land, and in an effort to support this, KCP has developed a webpage that compiles some of the best conservation and stewardship resources available for our region.