Ever wonder what that mysterious critter visiting your yard might have been? Do you share your property with an unusual looking frog, owl or shrew? Are you interested in making your backyard an appealing refuge for local wildlife and using native plants to minimize maintenance? If you happen to live adjacent to a forest, wetland or creek, there is now a unique chance for you to learn how to become a nature steward.
The South Coast Conservation Program and the Fraser Valley Conservancy have teamed up to offer local landowners in the Fraser Valley free property visits in 2014. Upon request, a knowledgeable representative will visit each property, provide expert information about what makes the property ecologically unique, and offer tips for improving habitat for native plants and wildlife. Landowners may be pleasantly surprised to find out that an endangered animal may also be using their backyard as a home.
Examples of some of the wildlife‐friendly activities that landowners will learn about include how to control invasive species that bully native plants and animals out of their habitat. They will also learn how to enhance their gardens by incorporating features like native flowering plants which attract hummingbirds and beneficial bees, as well nest boxes for songbirds and bats.
From forested mountains to streams and wetlands, the Fraser Valley’s beautiful landscapes support an amazing diversity of plants and wildlife. There are currently over 260 endangered plant and animal species living in the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley. However, as our human population continues to grow, the natural areas and the species they support are correspondingly shrinking. Nature stewarding is a proactive way that we can assist the natural environment in maintaining its diversity and consequently its ability to adapt to the pressures of change we are imposing on it.
This program is open to landowners in the region that live on or adjacent to natural areas with creeks, streams, wetlands, ponds or lakes. Financial support of this program is generously provided by Environment Canada. For more information about the program or to set up time for a visit, residents can contact:
Tamsin Baker, Stewardship Coordinator
South Coast Conservation Program