Saving Land for Bears and Badgers

Cranbrook, BC — The Nature Trust of BC announces the protection of the Columbia River Wetlands – Edgewater property in the Kootenays.

Located near the community of Edgewater these conservation lands cover 423 acres (171.5 hectares) and feature outstanding habitat and connectivity for Grizzly Bears and American Badgers. They also provide winter range for Mule Deer, White-tailed Deer and Moose.

“The Edgewater property has incredible diversity, ranging from wetlands to grasslands and open forest habitats,” said Chris Bosman, Kootenay Conservation Land Manager for The Nature Trust of BC. “From the upper benches, the views across the Columbia Valley and up and down the Rocky Mountain Trench are stunning. As a multi-generational family ranch, the land has been well cared for over the years by a conservation minded family. The Nature Trust looks forward to carrying on the tradition of responsible land stewardship.”

This property will complement nearby Nature Trust conservation lands that are managed as part of the Columbia National Wildlife Area and Columbia Wetlands Wildlife Management Area. An additional benefit for wildlife is that the Edgewater property adjoins the Columbia Wetlands Wildlife Management Area which serves as significant migratory bird habitat for over 200 species.

“The Nature Trust of BC has been working in the Kootenay region for over 40 years,” said Nature Trust Director Bill Bennett. “As a volunteer Board member, I am proud of the many properties The Nature Trust has conserved for wildlife. As I look to the future, I am excited to be part of a dedicated team leaving a legacy for future generations in the Kootenays and across the province.”

The community came together in a big way to help The Nature Trust of BC protect the Columbia River Wetlands-Edgewater property. Key supporters of this project include the BC Conservation Foundation, Regional District of East Kootenay through the Columbia Valley Local Conservation Fund, Fish & Wildlife Compensation Program, Golden District Rod & Gun Club, Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation, Kootenay Wildlife Heritage Fund, Lake Windermere Rod & Gun Club and the Canal Flats Wilderness Club as well as individual donors. The acquisition of this property included a generous landowner donation from Denis and Rosemary Tegart.

“The Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation (HCTF) is very pleased to support The Nature Trust’s purchase of this conservation property, which provides important connectivity to the Columbia Wetlands,” said HCTF CEO Brian Springinotic. “Since 1981, HCTF has invested millions to help purchase over 20 conservation properties in the Kootenays, using funds provided largely by anglers, hunters, trappers and guides – the Edgewater project is the latest in a long history of investing for conservation in BC.”

The Nature Trust of British Columbia is a leader in land conservation in the province. We conserve and care for BC’s most critical natural habitats for vulnerable wildlife and plants. Since 1971 we have protected more than 175,000 acres (71,000 hectares) with our partners.

Story & photos submitted by The Nature Trust of British Columbia