Corridor created for rare and endangered species in East Kootenay

Creative Commons, public domain
Creative Commons, public domain

A precious chunk of mixed forest and grassland in the Columbia Valley has been preserved.

Around 204 hectares of land between the towns of Fairmont Hot Springs and Canal Flats in the East Kootenay was secured, in part with funding from Environment Canada's Natural Areas Conservation Program.

Known as the Marion Creek Benchlands, the land contains ecologically-sensitive native grasslands and wetlands. It provides habitat for several rare and endangered species, including the badger and white-scaled sedge.

The property borders three conservation properties, including: the NCC Thunderhill Ranch covenant; the NCC Thunderhill Ranch Conservation Area; and the Nature Trust's Columbia Lake West Property.

By linking the areas an unbroken natural corridor is created that spans more than 30 square kilometres and contributes to a conservation legacy of provincial significance, said Linda Hannah, the Nature Conservancy of Canada's regional vice president.

The Government of Canada's $225-million Natural Areas Conservation Program is an on-the-ground initiative that takes action to preserve Canada's environment and conserve its precious natural heritage for present and future generations.