Conservation Resources

The following is a selection of conservation and stewardship resources available for our region listed in alphabetical order.

These resources are highlighted because they have been featured in the KCP eNews. This is not intended to be a comprehensive library of all conservation resources in the Kootenays. Please email us if you have any additional resources that you think should be on this list.

For a list of KCP publications, visit KCP Resources.

A Resource for Kootenay Lake Living

Regional District of Central Kootenay 

Best practices to keep your lakeshore natural can protect your property from flooding since deep-rooted trees and roots absorb water and wave energy, reducing shoreline erosion. Native plants, trees, rocks and soil help filter rain and storm water runoff by trapping sediment and contaminants which protect water quality. Since all wildlife need a healthy and safe place to survive and thrive, keeping the lake shore natural preserves fish and wildlife habitat. Download “A Resource for Kootenay Lake Living” for more information.

BC Breeding Bird Atlas

British Columbia Breeding Bird Atlas Partnership

The British Columbia Breeding Bird Atlas partnership is proud to publish online one of the largest volunteer-based initiatives in British Columbia’s history, and a major new resource for conservation. Leading British Columbian bird experts describe the distribution, abundance, habitat and conservation of about 320 species of birds.

BC’s Old Growth Forest: A Last Stand for Biodiversity

Karen Price (PhD), Rachel Holt (PhD, RPBio) and Dave Daust (MSc, RPF)

Karen Price (PhD), Rachel Holt (PhD, RPBio) and Dave Daust (MSc, RPF) conducted these analyses to investigate the province’s claims about the state of old growth, and arrived at a more accurate and, unfortunately, alarming view. For example, of the 13.2 million hectares of “old-growth”, the vast majority (80%) consists of small trees, including bog forests and subalpine forests. In contrast, only about 400,000 hectares of remaining old forest supports large trees, covering less than 1% of BC’s forested land. The report includes urgent recommendations, and concludes current policy will make matters worse.

BC Species & Ecosystems Explorer

Government of BC Conservation Data Centre

Use the BC Species & Ecosystems Explorer to search for data and information about plants, animals and ecosystems in B.C.

BC Water Tool

Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development 

The BC Water Tool is a modular application which provides access to water related data and knowledge in support of sustainable resource management. On this site you’ll find custom watershed reports for every stream, river and watershed in the Kootenay Boundary Region. You’ll also find monitoring data from more than 50 organizations, at more than 50,000 locations across southern B.C.


BC Ministry of Forests and Range

This is the web portal for the Biogeoclimatic Ecosystem Classification (BEC) and Ecology Research program of the British Columbia. This website is the source for information about the BEC system and access point for current and historical reports, maps, software, and other products of the program.

Building Resilience in the Kootenays

Kootenay Resilience

These pages describe a number of local projects that are: examining ongoing threats to biodiversity and communities; assessing vulnerabilities, and; identifying opportunities for building resiliency.

Canadian Columbia Basin Regional Framework for Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS)

Canadian Columbia Basin Invasive Species Program

This AIS Program Framework was designed primarily to increase collaboration between regional committees and their partners in the Basin, such as local stewardship groups and provincial agencies, for delivering their AIS programs.

Center for Large Landscape Conservation Resource Library

Center for Large Landscape Conservation

The Center for Large Landscape Conservation strategically connects ideas, individuals, and institutions to catalyze collaboration and amplify progress toward the imperative of our time: to conserve Earth’s resilient, vital large landscapes. The Center is inspired and led by a team of professionals with heart who bring their expertise and experience to the cause in support of good science and government, vision and on-the-ground practice, engineering, and communications. The Center’s resource library provides access to ideas, tools for policy makers and practitioners, case studies, and more.

Climate Change Education Resources

Columbia Basin Environmental Education Network (CBEEN)

CBEEN has compiled an online library of climate change resources on its website. This is a one-stop shop that provides access to easy-to-use, localized and credible climate change resources and information for the Columbia Basin.

Columbia Basin Action Plan

Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program

The Columbia Basin Plan sets forth the strategic direction for the Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program (FWCP) in the Columbia Region. The priority setting process is then described, followed by a short synopsis of the priority Action Plans. Taken together, this Basin Plan and the accompanying Action Plans present the FWCP priorities for investments in compensation activities within the Columbia Basin.

Columbia Basin Climate Source

Columbia Basin Trust & Selkirk College

The Columbia Basin Climate Source website was initiated by Columbia Basin Trust and developed by Selkirk College’s Applied Research and Innovation Centre. The site is for people seeking easy-to-understand information on climate change specific to communities throughout the Columbia Basin and boundary regions. 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.

Columbia River Basin Biodiversity Atlas

Selkirk College Geospatial Research Centre

The Biodiversity Atlas has been developed with geographic information system (GIS) technology to provide information on biodiversity and help people learn, understand, and make decisions.

Columbia Wetlands Marsh Bird Monitoring Project Report

Goldeneye Ecological Services/Canadian Wildlife Service

The 2016-2019 Columbia Wetlands Marsh Bird Monitoring Project (CWMBMP) was a multi-year study led by Goldeneye Ecological Services in collaboration with Canadian Wildlife Service, that was designed to estimate marsh bird populations, assess the distribution of target species, and identify significant breeding areas or habitat types within the Columbia Wetlands.

Conservation Atlas

Heart of the Rockies Initiative

The Heart of the Rockies Conservation Atlas is delivering the latest science in climate change adaptation and habitat connectivity to our land trust partners to help identify and validate selection of future conservation targets. This Atlas has a collection of spatial data specific to the conservation planning needs of our land trust partners. It is grouped into themed galleries: Connectivity, Habitat, Climate Change, Working Lands, and Planning. Thousands of additional datasets are also available to users through this platform.

Conservation Resource Directory

Great Northern Landscape Conservation Cooperative

To enhance communications and information exchange on landscape-level conservation efforts, the Great Northern LCC has developed an online resource directory containing descriptions of landscape initiatives and organizations that conduct conservation work within the Great Northern geographic area.

Cumulative Effects Framework

BC Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources Operations (MFLNRO)

The province is implementing a cumulative effects framework, a management approach that close attention to a number of environmental, social and economic factors, including biodiversity, riparian conditions, water and air quality, fish and wildlife impacts, cultural and heritage concerns, community needs and economic development opportunities.

Entering Ethical Space: A Series on Land-based Reconciliation in the Kootenay-Columbia

Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative
Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative developed a three-part online workshop series to learn and discuss how Indigenous and non-Indigenous people and organizations can work together to create and sustain prosperous communities and healthy landscapes in the British Columbia’s Kootenay-Columbia. Recordings of all three workshops are available at the link.

Environment Strategic Plan

Columbia Basin Trust

Five goals support the Trust’s strategic priorities for water and environment and will help focus the Trust’s Environment and Water Initiatives. They are presented here as distinct areas of focus, but the Trust recognizes the goals are intertwined and interdependent, and must be considered together in order to make progress toward environmental well-being.

Environmental Education Organization Directory

Columbia Basin Environmental Education Network (CBEEN)

CBEEN’s online searchable directory includes over 100 organizations that support environmental education opportunities for all ages in the Columbia Basin. This list can be searched and sorted by region, activity type, audience, and theme, and includes many KCP partners.

Expanding Water Monitoring Within Canada’s Upper Columbia Basin

Living Lakes Canada

On June 8th 2020, Living Lakes Canada on behalf of the Columbia Basin Water Monitoring Collaborative convened and facilitated a hydrology workshop with the purpose of developing recommendations for a phased expansion of the monitoring network for the Upper (Canadian) Columbia Basin (UCB). Greg Utzig, PAg, and Dr. Martin Carver, PEng/PGeo, PAg, provided a proposed approach to expanding the UCB monitoring network, and then the workshop participants actively engaged with the proposal, providing feedback on how it might be improved and implemented.

Field Guide to Site Classification & Identification for Southeast BC

BC Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources Operations (MFLNRO)

This field guide presents site classification and identification information for ecosystems of the south-central Columbia Mountains in southeast British Columbia.

Forest Fuel Treatments for the Southern West Kootenays

Kutenai Nature Investigations Ltd.

This report prepared by Greg Utzig of Kutenai Nature Investigations Ltd. explores what types of fuel treatments would likely be most effective for application in forests in the Southern West Kootenays. The project has primarily involved a focused literature review of studies that assessed the efficacy of fuel treatments where those treatments have been tested under active wildfire conditions.

Forest Practices Board Reports & Publications

Forest Practices Board of B.C.

The Forest Practices Board serves the public interest as the independent watchdog for sound forest and range practices in British Columbia.

Green Shores for Homes Guide

Stewardship Centre for BC

Green Shores for Homes (GSH) is a program that focuses on positive steps to reduce the impact of residential development on shoreline ecosystems, and helps waterfront homeowners restore natural shorelines and enjoy the many benefits they bring.

Guidelines for Amphibian and Reptile Conservation During Road Building and Management Activities in British Columbia

Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy
Amphibians and reptiles are the most at risk species assemblages in British Columbia (B.C.), with more than 50% of species in each group listed provincially and/or federally as species of conservation concern. Road mortality is identified as a significant threat to amphibians and reptiles, and mitigating this threat is identified as a priority action in the recovery planning documents for most of these species. The purpose of Guidelines for Amphibian and Reptile Conservation during Road Building and Management Activities in British Columbia (hereafter referred to as Guidelines) is to provide comprehensive information on assessing, avoiding, minimizing, and mitigating road impacts on amphibians and reptiles in B.C. Please contact, Small Mammal and Herpetofauna Specialist, if you have any questions about this material.

Kootenay National Park Resource Database

Friends of Kootenay National Park

This Research Database contains over 600 references on research and monitoring in Kootenay National Park. It can be searched by author, subject or any key word and download digital copies of the reports where available.

NCC Resource Centre

Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC)

The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is a leader in conservation science and planning. Learn more about some of the concepts and terms behind our work, or download some of our conservation planning documents.

Natural Legacies (securement) Toolkit

Land Trust Alliance of British Columbia

In 2014, the Land Trust Alliance of British Columbia embarked on an ambitious project known as the BC Conservation Toolkit. This project was designed to gather information of conservation in a simple, easy-to-use format for landowners, land trusts, professionals and municipalities.

Off-Road Vehicle Guide to B.C.’s Grasslands

Grasslands Conservation Council of BC

The recreational and commercial use of off-road vehicles (ORV) continues to grow in British Columbia and there is an ongoing need to promote their safe, responsible use. The Grasslands Conservation Council of British Columbia (GCC) recently updated its guidelines for ORV use on grasslands and produced a summary in a pocket-sized brochure.

Research Brief: Ecosystem Services and British Columbia’s Inland Temperate Rainforest

Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative

This research brief provides a summary of new research on ecosystem services in B.C.’s inland temperate rainforest, as well as highlights from the Upper Columbia basin and southern mountain caribou habitat.

Report Invasives BC App

Report a Weed BC

This Report Invasives app lets you report invasive species sightings anywhere in B.C. in a few quick and easy steps. Your report goes directly to a B.C. specialist for the reported species who will then coordinate follow-up activities with appropriate authorities when required. Downloads available for both Androids and iPhones.

Riparian Health Assessment

Cows and Fish

Wondering how to measure the health of your riparian area? This 4-page fact sheet will give you some ideas on why you may want to look at the health of your riparian area, and how you can use the information to make management decisions.

Planning 101

Regional District of Central Kootenay
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.

Species at Risk Fact Sheets

Species at Risk Partnerships on Agricultural Lands

Species at Risk Partnerships on Agricultural Lands (SARPAL) is an initiative supported by the Government of Canada under the National Conservation Plan. The goal of this initiative is to help recover and protect species listed under the federal Species at Risk Act (SARA) through voluntary stewardship on farmland where critical habitat for SARA-listed species are found.

Species at Risk Management Plan and Conservation Framework

BC Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy

British Columbia is home to tens of thousands of plant and animal species living in a rich diversity of habitats. Many of these species and their habitats are at risk of extinction or extirpation. This site is a gateway to information about species and ecological communities (ecosystems) at risk in B.C.

Species at Risk Public Registry

Government of Canada

The Public Registry contains news, information, and documents related to species at risk in Canada. The website has been designed to help the public better understand Canada’s approach to protecting and recovering species at risk, learn about species at risk and what’s being done to help them, and get involved in decision making and recovery activities.

State of the Basin

Columbia Basin Rural Development Institute

The State of the Basin is an RDI initiative to monitor and report on information relating to well-being in the Columbia Basin-Boundary region. Understanding our region’s environmental vitality involves research focused on themes that include Biodiversity, Land (including food), Air (including climate), and Water.

Stewardship Practices Guide

Stewardship Centre for BC

The Stewardship Centre for BC offers free resources to the stewardship community. These diverse and comprehensive documents are available for use on all ecological projects. The Stewardship Practices series is intended to encourage people to take voluntary stewardship actions to safeguard wildlife and species at risk.

Susan Bond Memorial Library

Rocky Mountain Trench Ecosystem Restoration Program

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 standardized specifically for the Rocky Mountain Trench ER program in 2002.

Taking Nature’s Pulse: The Status of Biodiversity in British Columbia

Biodiversity BC

This addresses the full range of land and freshwater biodiversity, including elements that overlap with the marine (saltwater) realm, such as salmon and seabirds, as well as important elements of biodiversity not addressed at a species or ecosystem level. It also discusses the pressures on biodiversity caused by human activity, including climate change.

Toward natural asset management in Kootenays

Municipal Natural Assets Initiative
Six local governments in the Kootenays region of British Columbia 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.

Why Care About Water Data in the Columbia Basin?

Living Lakes Canada

The purpose of this three-part webinar series hosted by the Columbia Basin Water Hub and Living Lakes Canada is to increase awareness of what water data is, and the value and applications of water data for decision makers and the public. Webinar 1: Climate change in the Columbia Basin and why water data is needed for adaptation; Webinar 2: Who is collecting water data in the Columbia Basin?; Webinar 3: Applications of Water Data for Decision Making.

Wildlife Connectivity: Fundamentals for Conservation Action

Center for Large Landscape Conservation

Conserving nature’s parts and processes requires working at ecosystem, landscape, and bioregional scales. Size matters in ecology; in general, the larger the scale of focus, the better the chance of conserving critical ecological processes such as hydrologic function, natural disturbance regimes, species life cycles, and functional trophic interactions. This document is intended as a guide in advancing wildlife corridor and ecological connectivity conservation.