Environment Canada

Environment Canada

September 07, 2010 10:30 ET

Government of Canada Investing in Community Action to Preserve Local Habitat and Species at Risk in Ontario

ORILLIA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Sept. 7, 2010) - Bruce Stanton, Member of Parliament for Simcoe North, on behalf of Canada's Environment Minister, the Honourable Jim Prentice, today announced funding from the Habitat Stewardship Program for Species at Risk. In total, $99,469 in federal funding will support environmental action focusing on conservation and protection of species at risk and their habitats, helping to preserve Canada's biodiversity.

"As part of the International Year of Biodiversity, the work being done for species at risk in our local community and across the regions of Canada highlights the importance of partnerships necessary to ensure the conservation and protection of wildlife and their habitats," said MP Stanton. "I therefore encourage all of us, as stewards of this natural land, to get involved and make a commitment towards the common goal of conservation."

"These projects will help to protect Canada's rich biodiversity for generations to come," said Minister Prentice. "The Government of Canada is proud to support the Simcoe area through the Habitat Stewardship Program for Species at Risk. Your actions, large or small, will help to protect the abundance and variety of life that is part of our natural heritage."

The Couchiching Conservancy's Carden Alvar Species at Risk Stewardship project is one of the three projects announced today that is being funded through the Habitat Stewardship Program. The Carden Alvar is a mosaic of specialized habitats, including extensive areas of globally-rare alvars as well as native and cultural grasslands, which support at least 15 species at risk, such as the butternut, the blanding's turtle and the common nighthawk. This project will take a landscape-based approach to address conservation and recovery needs of such species, as well as address the overall conservation of large grassland areas which support multiple species of breeding birds in decline. 

"Funding through the Habitat Stewardship Program allows us to involve landowners in on-the-ground projects that benefit several species at risk," said Ron Reid, project manager with Couchiching Conservancy. "The understanding and relationships that result from these projects are a vital part of building local support for conservation."

The goal of the Habitat Stewardship Program for Species at Risk is to contribute to the recovery and protection of species listed as endangered, threatened or of special concern under the Species at Risk Act

Projects that will receive funding this year include stewardship actions to conserve habitat for plant species at risk, negotiations with landowners to develop voluntary Land Care Agreements, targeted educational outreach efforts to reduce the entanglement of species at risk in fishing gear, and the enhancement of water quality and aquatic habitat on private lands to benefit aquatic species at risk. They will be undertaken with many partners such as agricultural producers, private landowners, and commercial fishers. These projects will benefit many species at risk, including the north Atlantic right whale, steller sea lion, swift fox, and small white leek.

The Habitat Stewardship Program for Species at Risk is administered by Environment Canada and managed cooperatively with Fisheries and Oceans Canada and the Parks Canada Agency. More information on the Species at Risk Act and the Habitat Stewardship Program for Species at Risk can be found on the Internet at: http://www.sararegistry.gc.ca or http://www.ec.gc.ca/hsp-pih/default.asp?lang=En&n=59BF488F-1

For more information and to view a backgrounder on this announcement, please visit the Web site of Environment Canada, at http://www.ec.gc.ca/.

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