We are pleased to announce the following projects have been awarded funding in 2016 through the RDCK’s Kootenay Lake Local Conservation Fund:
Darkwoods Ecosystem Restoration at Tye
$14,650.00 to the Nature Conservancy Canada (NCC) towards restoring the most heavily impacted and degraded habitat at the Tye town site by implementing an integrated pest management strategy, introducing biocontrol agents to deal with invasive weed species, and the planting of native shrubs and trees.
- Restore the most heavily degraded habitat on the west side of the south arm of Kootenay lake;
- Restore habitat adjacent to Cultus Creek which supports bull trout and kokanee spawners;
- Improve forage for ungulates;
- Establish biocontrols on invasive plants which will help control the establishment and spread of invasive plants both within Darkwoods and throughout the region;
- Provide opportunities for citizens to become actively involved in restoration;
- Increase awareness of invasive plants and available biocontrols.
Fish/Bear Lake Western Toad Ecology and Hwy31A Mortality Mitigation Study
$7,500.00 towards improve knowledge relating to the ecology and populations of the Western Toad and to reduce mortality along Highway 31A.
- Completion of year 2 of the 3-year study on the ecology and migration patterns of Western Toads;
- Use research results to guide public education and interpretation efforts to raise the profile of the toad and the need for conservation;
- Design a plan for safer Highway 31A infrastructure crossings for migrations of adult and juvenile toads at Bear and Fish Lakes.
Kootenay Lake Osprey Nest Monitoring Project
$6,370.00 to the Friends of Kootenay Lake towards improving the information on the status of breeding ospreys in the Kootenay Lake area. The project will also contribute to engaging and educating residents and catalyzing them to be active stewards of Kootenay Lake.
- Expanding the existing survey area to include the main body of the lake including the southern portion of the Duncan and Lardeau Valleys and the Creston Valley Wildlife Management Area (CVWMA);
- Host 2 workshops and 3 field monitoring sessions to educate and engage 20 citizen-scientists;
- Developing a handout for interpreting Osprey behavior for the monitoring volunteers to be better able to assess breeding activity. This will include descriptions of behaviors and how they may be viewed to assure accurate monitoring and data collection by all volunteers;
- Conducting nest surveys with volunteer “Lake Watchers” via boat and land three times per year (boat surveys are necessary as some nests are only accessible via boat access).
- Assembling results from all study areas into an annual report with results going to the BC Nest Records Scheme, provincial Species Inventory Database and to Project NestWatch.
Kootenay Community Bat Project
$15,000.00 to the Kootenay Centre for Forest Alternatives towards promoting and conserving the variety of bat species and their associated habitats that exist on private land within the Kootenay Lake Local Conservation Fund Service Area.
- To engage private citizens in community-based bat stewardship;
- To conserve and enhance critical bat roost habitat on private land;
- To monitor bat populations through citizen-science initiatives.